Proposed merger between Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro and Waterloo North Hydro

The two major companies providing power for much of the Waterloo Region are trying to become one.

Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro and Waterloo North Hydro announced a proposed merger during a virtual media conference on Friday.

Like several other local power utilities in communities across Ontario, the two are considering combining operations.

If approved it would create a larger, local and publicly-owned power utility, servicing the municipalities of Kitchener, Waterloo, Wellesley, Wilmot and Woolwich.

A merger is expected to result in the same or better level of service. It is also expected to keep rates competitive and generally stable for customers.

Officials said municipalities would receive an increase in incremental dividends and interest on their investment over the 10-year period following the merger.

“On October 4th and 5th, a memorandum of understanding regarding a proposed merger will be considered by all five municipal councils for approval. These municipalities are the shareholders of our existing corporations,” said Jim Phillips, the chair of the Kitchener Power Corp.

If all five city and town councils approve the merger, community engagement would follow. Ultimately, it would need to be approved by the Ontario Energy Board. Phillips believes if all goes as planned, it could be finished by the third quarter of 2022.

A name has not been set yet, but a website has been created for customers to learn more.