Read our full 3-page submission as a PDF here.
Since 2007, Lake Ontario Waterkeeper has been actively participating in the development of an Integrated Power System Plan (IPSP) for Ontario. As a funded intervenor in the initial IPSP hearing before the Ontario Energy Board, LOW undertook research, distributed information about the plan to remote communities, and worked with counsel to contribute meaningfully to the hearing.
On May 6th, 2011, an announcement was made that consultation sessions for the Ontario Power Authority's (OPA's) 2011 IPSP would begin on May 17th, 2011. This gives only 10 days notice. With this announcement came an option to apply for participant funding to contribute expertise during the consultation session. Confirmation of funding was only sent 11 days before the final consultation on May 31st, 2011.
The OPA’s participant funding rules also severely restricted LOW’s ability to participate in this process. Funding was only made available for travel, accommodation, and third-party expert expenses. Given the funding restrictions, LOW considered hiring an external expert to participate in the process on our behalf. However, the extremely short time frame made this impossible.
Provide sufficient notice of information sessions, participant funding, and comment deadlines to allow for meaningful participation by the public. At a minimum, 30 days of notice for each of these dates should be provided.
Provide participant funding decisions in a timely way, allowing a minimum of 30 days between funding notification and the beginning of consultation activities.
Make participant funding available for in-house staff time to facilitate work by groups like Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, with in-house expertise, but no funding to allow those staff to work on the project.
Read our complete submission here.