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Bill C-319

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First Session, Thirty-ninth Parliament,
55 Elizabeth II, 2006
BILL C-319
An Act to establish the Energy Price Commission

first reading, June 6, 2006


2nd Session, 39th Parliament

This bill was introduced during the First Session of the 39th Parliament. Pursuant to the Standing Orders of the House of Commons, it is deemed to have been considered and approved at all stages completed at the time of prorogation of the First Session. The number of the bill remains unchanged.
Mr. Martin (Winnipeg Centre)


This enactment establishes an Energy Price Commission to regulate the wholesale and retail price of motor fuels, including diesel and propane, as well as heating oil and electric power. The purpose of price regulation is to avoid unreasonable increases that affect the cost of living and depress business activity.
Existing supply contracts are exempt for the first year.
The enactment will facilitate reasonable consistency in prices from province to province, allowing for production and distribution costs. The regulation further minimizes the risk of collusion in pricing and prevents dominant suppliers from setting unreasonable prices.
The enactment also links the issue of price control to competition. Any investigation of an alleged offence under the Competition Act that is related to energy pricing is referred by the Competition Tribunal to the Commission for investigation and report to the Tribunal before the Tribunal makes a determination or order on the matter.

Also available on the Parliament of Canada Web Site at the following address:

1st Session, 39th Parliament,
55 Elizabeth II, 2006
house of commons of canada
BILL C-319
An Act to establish the Energy Price Commission
WHEREAS the price of energy affects the cost of most commodities and goods and the health of interprovincial trade in all parts of Canada;
AND WHEREAS it is essential for the stability of the cost of living and the growth of interprovincial trade across Canada that energy prices be regulated and that unjustifiable increases be prevented;
NOW, THEREFORE, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:
Short title
1. This Act may be cited as the Energy Price Commission Act.
2. The definitions in this section apply in this Act.
« Commission »
“Commission” means the Energy Price Commission.
« énergie »
“energy” means motor fuel, heating oil or electric power.
« ministre »
“Minister” means the Minister of Industry.
“motor fuel”
« carburant »
“motor fuel” means any hydrocarbon fuel that is to be used in the engine of a motor vehicle.
“supply contract”
« contrat d’approvision-nement »
“supply contract” means a contract for the supply of motor fuel over a period of time by delivery direct to the vehicles of the purchaser or to storage owned by or operated for supply to the purchaser.
« Tribunal »
“Tribunal” means the Competition Tribunal established by subsection 3(1) of the Competition Tribunal Act.
Commission established
3. (1) There is hereby established a Commission to be known as the Energy Price Commission, consisting of not more than five full-time members and not more than ten part-time members to be appointed by the Governor in Council.
Term of office
(2) A full-time member shall be appointed to hold office during good behaviour for a term not exceeding seven years and may be removed at any time by the Governor in Council for cause.
Second term
(3) Subject to subsections (4) and (5), a member may be appointed for a second term, but not a third or subsequent term.
Age limit
(4) No person shall continue as a member of the Commission after attaining the age of 65 years.
(5) No person shall be appointed to or remain in office as a member of the Commission who
(a) is not a Canadian citizen; or
(b) is or becomes a shareholder, director, officer, partner or employee of a corporation or enterprise whose business includes the exploration, transportation, marketing, manufacture or sale of energy that is under the jurisdiction of the Commission or has any financial interest in any such corporation or enterprise.
(6) Paragraph (5)(b) does not apply to an interest that vests beneficially in a member by will or succession and is disposed of absolutely by the member within three months of the vesting.
(7) For the purpose of this section, a position or interest described in paragraph (5)(b) that is held by the spouse of a member is deemed to be held by the member.
Presiding officers
4. The Governor in Council shall name one of the full-time members to be the Chairperson of the Commission and two of the full-time members to be Vice-Chairpersons of the Commission.
Remuneration of full-time members
5. (1) A full-time member shall be paid such remuneration and reasonable expenses as the Governor in Council may order.
Expenses of part-time members
(2) A part-time member shall be paid such reasonable expenses as the Governor in Council may order.
Head office
6. The head office of the Commission shall be in such place in Canada as is ordered by the Governor in Council.
7. (1) The Commission may operate in one or more panels of five or more persons named by the Commission.
(2) A quorum for transaction of the business of the Commission or a panel is one third of the membership of the Commission or panel.
Open meetings
(3) The Commission and any panel of the Commission shall meet in public at a time and place that has been previously advertised to the public, unless the Commission has ordered that the meeting may be held in private in order to protect the confidentiality of a bona fide interest of any person.
Frequency of meetings
(4) The Commission shall meet at least ten times a year.
Object of Commission
8. (1) The object of the Commission is to regulate the wholesale and retail price of energy in Canada.
(2) In carrying out its object or an investigation referred to in section 11, the Commission has the powers of a commissioner under the Inquiries Act.
Price factors
9. In setting the prices of energy, the Commission shall take into account
(a) the interest of the public in having energy available at a reasonable and consistent price for personal, commercial and industrial use; and
(b) the reasonable costs of the manufacturer, distributor, wholesaler and retailer of the energy that have been incurred in Canada in respect of the energy.
Sale only at regulated price
10. (1) No person shall sell energy or offer it for sale at a wholesale or retail price that exceeds a level set by the Commission.
Existing supply contracts
(2) In the case of a supply contract that is in effect on the day on which this Act comes into force, subsection (1) does not apply until one year after that day.
Competition Tribunal
11. If the Tribunal refers to the Commission a question respecting competition in the wholesale or retail marketing of energy, the Commission shall investigate the matter and submit a report to the Tribunal.
R.S., c. C-34; R.S., c. 19 (2nd Supp.), s. 19
Competition Act
12. The Competition Act is amended by adding the following after section 103.3:
Referral to Energy Price Commission
103.4 If any matter that relates to the wholesale or retail pricing of energy comes before the Tribunal, the Tribunal shall refer the matter to the Energy Price Commission established by section 3 of the Energy Price Commission Act for investigation and report, and shall not make any determination or order on the matter until the Commission has submitted the report to the Tribunal.
Published under authority of the Speaker of the House of Commons
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