What is ESA? (Electrical Safety Authority)

From here

We are consistently asked who ESA is…and what they do for electrical safety in the city of Ottawa.  Ring Electric Inc. is part of ESA’s Authorized Contractor Program.  Read this article below for more information on how ESA works for a safer community.

Introducing the Electrical Safety Authority

On April 1, 1999 the Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) was established as a not-for-profit authority accountable for public electrical safety in Ontario. Ontario’s Electricity Act provided ESA with sole responsibility for regulating the safe use of electricity and equipment in Ontario, enforcing the Ontario Electrical Safety Code, appointing electrical inspectors, and prescribing fees for service. ESA would:

􏰀 promote activities that enhance public electrical safety. 􏰀 encourage industry to take responsibility for enhancing electrical safety. 􏰀 educate industry, government and the public about electrical safety, and 􏰀 undertake activities that encourage harmonization of electrical standards and


The Electrical Safety Authority, formerly Ontario Hydro Electrical Inspection, has been the standard bearer for the safe use of electric power and equipment for more than a century.

Electrical Inspection – Historical Perspective 12 12/12/2003The Evolution of Electrical Inspection in Ontario

It has an established track record of being responsive to market changes, customer needs and a new regulatory environment. It has developed a strong vision for the future of electrical inspection and safety in Ontario. That vision builds on its historic strengths and taps into its innovative, entrepreneurial spirit, and is support by high skilled employees who are dedicated to public electrical safety. Electrical Inspection is ready to face the challenges of the 21st century confident in its own strength and empowered by the trust and respect of its important stakeholders.

With the restructuring of the electricity industry and Ontario Hydro’s participation in a competitive marketplace, it was no longer appropriate for electrical inspection functions (Electrical Inspection) to remain within Ontario Hydro. Separation from Ontario Hydro was considered essential to prevent a real and/or perceived conflict of interest.

The establishment of a new not-for-profit, financially self-sustaining Inspection organization without share capital was deemed necessary to carry out the functions performed by Electrical Inspection. The organization was to be established as a Part III Not-For-Profit Corporation under the Corporations Act (Ontario).

Under this new governance structure, the Ontario Provincial Government (Government) has retained authority for policy and regulation approval, and monitoring performance in the area of Electrical Inspection. The respective authorities of Ministries of the Government and those organizations delegated administrative authorities are outlined in Bill 54 (the Safety and Consumer Statutes Administration Act of the Government).

Under Bill 35, the Government will delegate sole authority for the delivery of electrical inspection functions to the new corporation as the appropriate administrative authority.

The new organization will report directly to a Board of Directors, which is responsible for governance and operational effectiveness and which recommends policy and regulatory changes for approval by Government. Industry representatives will form the majority of Board membership.

Electrical Safety Code regulations, while subject to final approval by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, will be developed by province-wide electrical inspection organizations with advice from experts and stakeholders through Industry Advisory Councils.

Responsibility for interpretation of Electrical Safety Code regulations remains with the new Electrical Safety Authority.

A formal dispute resolution process will be put in place by the Electrical Safety Authority that will clearly outline the avenue parties can pursue if dissatisfied with Electrical Safety Code interpretations.

Electrical Inspection – Historical Perspective 13 12/12/2003

The Evolution of Electrical Inspection in Ontario

An administrative agreement comparable to that between Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) (an administrative body under Bill 54) and the Ministry of Consumer and Business Services (MCBS) was to be negotiated between the new corporation and the ministry to which it will be responsible, the MCBS.

There is to be no overall fee increase resulting from the move of Electrical Inspection to the new corporation. This does not prohibit revision of rate structures to more accurately track costs. Although the primary responsibility for additional costs associated with the establishment and initial operation of the new corporation rests with Electrical Safety Authority, additional funds for the transition were made available through Ontario Hydro.

Every effort has been made to ensure the transition to the new organization is seamless. This does not preclude future changes as a result of Government initiatives or decisions by the Board of Directors.

The Electrical Safety Authority (ESA) is a corporation without share capital under Ontario’s Corporations Act. Granted Letters Patent on January 12, 1999. Effective April 1, 1999, ESA is the Authority delegated for the purposes of the Electricity Act, 1998.

As a not-for-profit organization, ESA operates according to a set of principles designed to ensure an effective balance between the twin goals of protecting the public interest while supporting continued private sector competitiveness. A 12 member Board of Directors representing both industry and non-industry interests governs ESA, and further advice and guidance is provided through advisory councils. ESA is accountable to the public through the Minister of Consumer and Commercial Relations for meeting its legislative and contractual obligations in the delivery of its delegated regulatory mandate. At the same time, it is accountable to its regulated sectors for results, sound management and efficiency.

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