FortisBC Inc.

FortisBC Inc.

April 21, 2008 18:31 ET

FortisBC Receives Approval for Interim 0.8% Rate Increase to Recover Power Purchase Costs

KELOWNA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - April 21, 2008) - The British Columbia Utilities Commission (BCUC) has approved an interim increase of 0.8 per cent to FortisBC's electricity rates effective May 1, 2008. This is a direct result of BC Hydro's recent interim rate increase, which has increased FortisBC's cost to purchase power from BC Hydro by 5.06 per cent.

"Under long-term contract with BC Hydro, FortisBC must purchase about $36.6 million worth of power from BC Hydro annually," said John Walker, President & CEO, FortisBC. "This decision is for a flow-through of expenses, and simply allows us to recover the additional $1.1 million expense we will incur in 2008 as a result of the BC Hydro rate increase."

As a result of this cost flow-through to FortisBC customers, the impact for the average residential customer is a cost of about $7.92 per year. This is an interim rate increase. Should the BC Hydro rate increase not be approved by the BCUC as filed, any adjustment would be refunded by FortisBC to its customers.

FortisBC offers programs and services to help customers manage their electrical bills by reducing power consumption. The Company's PowerSense program provides both financial incentives and helpful advice on energy efficient technologies and practices. Information on FortisBC energy efficiency programs is available at www.fortisbc.com.

About FortisBC

FortisBC Inc. is an integrated regulated electric utility based in Kelowna, British Columbia. Focused on the safe delivery of reliable and cost-effective electricity, FortisBC serves approximately 154,000 customers directly and indirectly through wholesale utilities in the southern interior of B.C.

FortisBC owns and operates four regulated hydroelectric generating plants and approximately 6,900 kilometers of transmission and distribution power lines. FortisBC employs over 500 people in British Columbia and is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada. With total assets exceeding $10 billion, Fortis Inc. serves almost 2,000,000 gas and electric customers. Fortis Inc. shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional information can be accessed at www.fortisinc.com or www.sedar.com.

FortisBC may include forward-looking statements in this release which reflect management's expectations regarding the Company's future growth, results of operations, performance, business prospects and opportunities. Wherever possible, words such as "anticipate", "believe", "expects", "intend" and similar expressions have been used to identify the forward-looking statements. These statements reflect management's current beliefs and are based on information currently available to the Company's management. By their very nature, forward-looking statements are based on underlying factors or assumptions which are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties surrounding future expectations generally. Such risk factors or assumptions include, but are not limited to, general economic, market and business conditions, regulatory developments, weather and competition. FortisBC cautions readers that a number of factors could cause actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from the results discussed or implied in the forward-looking statements. These factors should be considered carefully and undue reliance should not be placed on the forward-looking statements. For additional information with respect to certain of these risks or factors, reference should be made to FortisBC's continuous disclosure materials filed from time to time with Canadian Securities Regulatory Authorities. FortisBC disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

Contact Information

  • FortisBC Inc.
    Nancy MacLeod
    Manager, Corporate Communications
    (250) 469-8016
    Website: www.fortisbc.com