Condo owners launch petition pushing for a fix to Alberta’s electricity rebate program

Condo Owners Forum Launches Petition after months of stalling by Government.

WATCH GLOBAL NEWS CALGARY: Alberta condo owners are calling on the province to include all homeowners in an affordability program. Ina Sidhu explains.

Condo Owners Forum Society of Alberta (COF) has initiated a petition and letter-writing campaign to get the attention of the Government of Alberta to the flawed electricity energy rebate program first announced in March 2022.

COF has attempted (unsuccessfully) through letters, emails, and phone calls to reach out to Minister Jones click to see letter here  until after this petition had been successfully launched. 

As a result of this petition COF has had a conversation with Minister Matt Jones who says he is committed to making this or some future program more inclusive, but until that program is announced we still need to continue our democratic right to question the Government on programs which need to be improved. .

The inability of many condo owners to qualify is upsetting.  Many Alberta condos have one electric meter for the complex.  As the Energy Rebates Regulation is currently designed, many condo owners will not benefit from the rebate. COF has been asking the Government to include condo owners since July 2022.

“We know we can help the Government address this inequity if they would only engage us and allow us to help, said Condo Owners Forum Society of Alberta Director Phil Rosenzweig.  “We are confident that the Government always intended to treat all Alberta homeowners consistently.”

“Condo owners deserve to be treated equally irrespective of what type or how old of a complex they choose to live in and to be treated the same as owners of single-family dwellings.  In my condo (124 units), this represents $62,000 that owners in his condominium currently cannot obtain.” says Rosenzweig

The petition and letter-writing campaign can be found here.

COF – Continuing to advocate for Alberta Condominium Owners

We continue to advocate for the Government of Alberta to correct the current inequity and unfairness in the Energy Rebate program.

Many Alberta condo owners are receiving the electricity rebate if they are being billed directly by their utility, but those who pay for their electricity as part of their Condo fees are not.

We have not let the issue die.

The province said, in early December, the legislative changes included in the Inflation Relief Statutes Amendment Act, 2022 would enable the government to deliver timely, effective cost-of-living supports and inflation relief to Albertans. 

However Minister Matt Jones has not yet told us how he will include the estimated more than 300,000 Albertans living in Condominiums that have been left out of the electricity rebate program since it’s inception in July of 2022.

The Condo Owners Forum Society, and other Condo Groups have been asking for changes allowing more inclusivity since May of 2022 and have had very little feedback on our proposals from the Government. We are, however, encouraged by Minister Jones more recent statements that his ministry is working on a way to get rebates to customers who are currently excluded from the program.

We are discouraged that there have been no timelines or details during Minister’s nearly three months in office.

"If we can stand up an affordability portal to distribute $900 million to 1.5 million Albertans in two months. surely we can do this" said Jones in an interview with Postmedia on January 22nd, 2023

See full story by Lisa Johnson in the Edmonton Journal by clicking on the image

We expect Minister Jones to bring his promised changes forward to this program in the upcoming Legislative Session rather than leaving it to become an election issue this Spring.

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