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MARCH 2024 NEWSLETTER

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

As part of our gas co-operative’s ongoing cost-saving measures to sustain low utility rates for our membership, Foothills Natural Gas Co-op will be holding our Annual General Meeting through a Zoom virtual platform. 


Meeting Details:

  • Date:  Wednesday, March 27th, 2024

  • Time:  7:00 pm

  • Pre-registration is required to participate in the virtual meeting


Primary Purpose of meeting:

  • Review and approval of the 2023 audited financial statement

  • Appointment of auditor

  • Appointment of directors


Any members wishing to participate in our 2024 Annual General Meeting can pre-register through our office with an email address required for an invitation to the Zoom virtual meeting. Pre-registration will be open until the end of business hours on Friday, March 22nd, 2024.


Once members have pre-registered, Foothills will email out an Annual General Meeting information package and a Zoom meeting invitation to join the March 27th, 2024, meeting. Foothills will be conducting a draw at the end of the meeting for three $100 donations to any qualified charity of a members’ choice so participation by members will automatically secure your membership participation in this charity draw.


Foothills retains the right to approve the charity chosen by the member.    A summary of the approved audited financial statement will be included in an upcoming monthly billing statement for review by members unable to attend.  If you have any questions regarding AGM information , please contact our office.



CARBON TAX INCREASE APRIL 2024

Provincial natural gas utilities are required to charge Federal Carbon Tax as per the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act. This carbon tax rate will increase from the 2023 rate of $3.33 per GJ to $4.10 per GJ effective April 1st, 2024. Our membership will also pay an additional 5% GST on the carbon tax charge bringing the taxable portion of your gas bill up to a rate of $4.30 per GJ. These carbon tax rates are prescribed on an increasing scale and are scheduled to increase to approximately $5.11 per GJ (with GST) in April 2025. All the taxes charged under this Act are remitted directly to Revenue Canada.



PAPER STATEMENT FEE

Foothills Natural Gas Co-op Ltd. will be implementing a $1.50 paper statement fee for any members requiring a hard copy monthly invoice mailed to their address effective May 1st, 2024.


The Board of Directors at Foothills Natural Gas Co-op requested a review of the number of members receiving a monthly invoice by e-billing and the number of members receiving a monthly invoice by hard copy postage mail-out. Additionally, the Board requested a detailed breakdown for the realized costs that the gas co-op incurs for the e-billing members and hard copy mail-outs. During the January 2024 internal bill run, Foothills completed 1,995 hard copy invoices that were sent out by Canada Post and 1,664 e-billing invoices sent directly to members via email addresses.


In tracking the realized costs of both methods of invoicing, Foothills verified that the hard copy postal mail-outs averaged an expense of $1.69 per member and the e-billing email address expense was $0.14 per member. The hard copy postal mail-outs covered labor costs, stationary costs, office equipment costs (copier, ink, invoice stuffer, postage machine and postal costs) which collectively cost the gas co-op $3,371.55 while the e-billing members cost the gas co-op $232.96 for the month.


In respecting two of the fundamental co-operative principles of equality and equity fairness, the Board felt obliged to recognize the considerable cost saving represented by the e-billing membership and approved the $1.50 paper statement fee as a revenue neutral rate which enables the gas co-op to recover the realized costs of the monthly paper statement mail-outs. Anyone wishing to change from a hard copy postal mail-out to a monthly e-billing of their invoice directly to your email address may contact our office to assist with that change or alternatively, members can make the change to receiving your monthly invoice via their email address on our corporate website: www.foothillsgas.ca at the bottom of the homepage.

 

Both the Board of Directors and management at Foothills Natural Gas Co-op appreciates that in today’s world it has become ever more challenging to meet the expectations of any given customer demographic but none more critical than in the case of a member-owned and not-for-profit gas co-operative. The Board of Directors is confident that our membership will recognize the impartial parity that the gas co-op is striving towards in keeping our rate structures fair for all members. It is important also to acknowledge that out of 54 provincial gas co-operatives delivering rural natural gas, Foothills Natural Gas Co-op is currently ranked number 3 in maintaining the lowest utility rate structures on behalf of our membership.

 

Foothills Natural Gas Co-op Newsletter for March 2024
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