COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Program for Small Business

The Government of Ontario is providing $8 million to support small business and registered charity customers who are struggling to pay their energy bills as a result of the COVID-19 emergency.

The COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program for Small Business (CEAP-SB) provides a one time, on-bill credit to eligible small business and registered charity customers to help them catch up on their energy bills and resume regular payments. Small business and registered charity customers may be eligible for up to $425 in support towards their electricity bill. Customers that primarily use electricity for heating, could be eligible for up to $850 in support. Small business and registered charity customers could also be eligible for up to $425 in support towards their natural gas bill.

CEAP-SB is being delivered by electricity distributors, natural gas distributors and unit sub-meter providers (USMPs), in accordance with rules laid out by the Ontario Energy Board (OEB).

Please note, funding for CEAP-SB is limited and applying does not guarantee Waterloo North Hydro has CEAP-SB funding remaining.

Who is Eligible?

Small business (GS<50 kWh), and registered charity customers may be eligible to receive funding through the CEAP-SB if they meet the following criteria:

  • The customer has an active account with Waterloo North Hydro
  • The customer’s account is classified as a general service < 50 kW customer with Waterloo North Hydro. Customers can find information about their class on their bill, or they can contact Waterloo North Hydro.
  • The customer has a registered business number or charitable registration number for the small business or registered charity operating out of the premises.
  • The customer’s account was in good standing on March 17, 2020, and the customer was not enrolled in an arrears payment agreement for amount owing prior to March 17, 2020.  However, customers that enrolled in an arrears payment agreement for amounts that became owing after March 17, 2020 are eligible for CEAP-SB. 
  • The customer failed to make complete payment for the electricity and/or natural gas charges (as applicable) on at least two bills issued since March 17, 2020, and has an overdue balance on the date of their application for CEAP-SB.
  • The customer’s small business or registered charity premises was required to close* to the public for regular operations for at least 15 days as a result of a government order or inability to comply with public health recommendations. 

* “Close” means that the small business or registered charity was unable to maintain regular operations as a result of government order or health recommendations that required them to either fully close operations, limit access to their premises or limit the services provided or available to the public.

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How Much Am I Eligible For?

CEAP-SB funding is limited, and Waterloo North Hydro will process applications in the order they are received. Submitting an application for CEAP-SB to your Waterloo North Hydro does not guarantee funding.

Eligible small business and registered charity customers may qualify for a one-time CEAP-SB credit equal to the electricity charges that are overdue on the date of their application for CEAP-SB, up to a maximum of $850 if their premises is mainly heated by electricity, or up to a maximum of $425 otherwise.

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How Do I Apply?

Applying for CEAP-SB is easy. WNH has two ways for you to apply.

  1. Complete the online version of the form. Access the online version of the form here.
  2. Complete the PDF version of the form located here. Pour télécharger une version française de ce formulaire, veuillez cliquer ici

Once completed, you can email the form to CEAPSB@wnhydro.com. You can also drop your form in-person at our office, or mail your form to Waterloo North Hydro at:

Waterloo North Hydro
526 Country Squire Rd
Waterloo, ON
N2J 4G8

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How Will I Know if My Application Has Been Approved?

Once you have submitted your application form, you will receive a confirmation email letting you know your application has been submitted and received.

The average processing time for applications is 10 business days. Once Waterloo North Hydro has finished reviewing your application, we will contact you letting you know the result of the review.

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Where Can I Find More Information?

For more information on CEAP-SB, please visit the OEB’s CEAP and CEAP-SB webpage at www.oeb.ca/CEAP.  You can also contact us at CEAPSB@wnhydro.com or by phone at 519-886-5090 with any questions you may have. 

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can customers apply for CEAP-SB to help with both their electricity and gas bills?

Yes, but customers can only receive a CEAP-SB credit once for electricity and once for natural gas. This will assist in achieving the government’s objective of making CEAP-SB available to help the most people affected financially by the COVID-19 emergency.
 

2. What if my small business or registered charity has multiple locations?

A small business or registered charitable organization that has multiple locations can receive only one CEAP-SB credit towards their electricity bill and one CEAP-SB credit towards their natural gas bill, even if they have multiple locations throughout the Province.
 

3. Is there a deadline to apply for CEAP-SB?

No, but funding for the program is limited, and Waterloo North Hydro will process applications in the order in which they are received. CEAP-SB funding is not guaranteed even after a complete application has been submitted.

The government is making $8 million available for CEAP-SB to support small business and registered charity energy customers.  Each utility and USMP has been allocated a share of that amount, based on their reporting on customer numbers.  Waterloo North Hydro will stop accepting applications and providing CEAP-SB credits once our allocated share of CEAP-SB funding has run out. 

4. When will I see the credit on my bill?

Waterloo North Hydro will process complete CEAP-SB applications within 10 business days of receipt.

Provided that you are eligible and Waterloo North Hydro has CEAP-SB funds remaining when we assess your CEAP-SB application as complete, the credit will be applied to the next available bill issued to you after that.

5. Why is there a cap on the maximum amount of the CEAP-SB credit available per eligible customer?

The pre-set maximum amount of support for eligible customers will assist in achieving the government’s objective of making CEAP-SB available to help the most people affected financially by the COVID-19 emergency. For the same reason, CEAP-SB funding will be available only once per customer for each of electricity and natural gas, even if they have multiple locations throughout the Province.

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