View Full Version : OG&E proposes major bill changes in residential customers' rate case



Servicetech571
05-02-2016, 05:55 AM
Residential customers could see a doubling of the standard customer charge and lower winter electricity prices as part of major billing changes proposed in Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co.'s rate case.

The $92.5 million case goes before an administrative law judge in a hearing scheduled to start Tuesday at the Oklahoma Corporation Commission. Testimony could last for several weeks.

If granted in full, the plan could hike residential bills by $7.22 per month.

http://newsok.com/article/5495091

Midtowner
05-02-2016, 06:26 AM
If I read it right, we'd be the only state which allows the utility to charge $315 per customer per year before any product at all was delivered. Doesn't OG&E's rate structure already account for fixed costs? Don't they get permanent rate increases fairly routinely to pay for one-time costs (e.g. to repair fallen power lines after major storms)?

bombermwc
05-02-2016, 07:14 AM
I say no way OG&E. They continually ask for these to make up for their bad decisions in the past and keep trying to push coal more and more. Its the only industry where the company can pass on the cost directly to a captive customer base for "investment" projects. What a load of crap. If it's going to cost money to open a new plant, then you need to start SAVING or start a loan to pay for it, not just get it for free by charging customers (whom you're going to charge later for the power from that thing and fat change of lowering that rate after the term of the increase expires). When was the last time we saw the rate reduced after the explanation for the previous increase was over? How about it even staying the same? There's always some reason they need to increase it.

Sort of like how they all of a sudden want to force charges to solar folks. The base charge for being connected to OG&E was supposed to cover that for ALL customers. There's another way OG&E is trying to weasel out someone that's competing in their space. The fear is that if solar really ever takes off and we're looking at a true distributed power system, that OG&E is effed and they want to force people out of it as much as possible.

And lets not get started on the corporation commission. Utilities are usually given a green flag for whatever they want. Rarely have i seen them make the correct vote in saying no. One of those more recent ones was when OG&E wanted to build another COAL plant. WTF OG&E???? At least that time, the commission was smart enough to tell OG&E that it wasn't going to happen. Lo' and behold, a hell of a lot of wind turbines went up after it.

bradh
05-02-2016, 08:39 AM
Why are we always talking about coal, wind or solar, and I rarely hear natural gas mentioned?

stile99
05-02-2016, 08:56 AM
Why are we always talking about coal, wind or solar, and I rarely hear natural gas mentioned?

Fracking good question! It has the potential to really shake things up!

onthestrip
05-02-2016, 09:54 AM
Why are we always talking about coal, wind or solar, and I rarely hear natural gas mentioned?

Pretty sure they have moved to NG on one, maybe two of their plants.

This rate increase is ridiculous. They try to say that it wont increase customers costs much because of low energy prices. OK, but when those go up we will see our bills go way up.

And whats with this 3 part charge? A service charge, demand charge and a usage charge? Isnt demand and usage the same thing? Leave it at 2 parts like it is already. I get that a fixed service charge is needed to pay for infrastructure things but why do we need two other charges on usage? Let me pay the service charge and then pay for whatever amount of energy I use. Why muddle it up? And why reduce the incentive for us to use less energy and be energy efficient? Hell, even our crazy AG is against it

David
05-02-2016, 10:32 AM
Huh, interesting. Incidentally, the demand charge is what they're trying to add to solar customers, and is supposedly something fairly standard in the commercial electrical world.

bchris02
05-02-2016, 10:37 AM
OG&E should just go nuclear. It's cheaper, greener, and more efficient, and we have the technology already. Put the plant on the Arkansas river near Tulsa.

Bellaboo
05-02-2016, 10:50 AM
They already charge extra for wind generated electricity.

Saw an article a few months back where NG has already surpassed coal as the number 1 producer for electricity in the USA.

chuck5815
05-02-2016, 02:39 PM
OG&E should just go nuclear. It's cheaper, greener, and more efficient, and we have the technology already. Put the plant on the Arkansas river near Tulsa.

cheaper? haha.

we'd likely be looking at the biggest rate case in the history of OG&E. and i doubt the shareholders would sign off on such a massive expense, even if a rate case were approved.

Jersey Boss
05-02-2016, 02:57 PM
OG&E should just go nuclear. It's cheaper, greener, and more efficient, and we have the technology already. Put the plant on the Arkansas river near Tulsa.

Good luck finding an insurance company that would write a policy for a nuclear plant.

Servicetech571
05-02-2016, 06:20 PM
Demand charges are something most utilities have been charging large industrial customers for years. Transformer and line sizing is determined by peak load. Surprised they are going to try it on residential, better spread your load if you want to keep the bill down. I don’t think most customers will understand it, and end up with higher bills.
http://www.energysmart.enernoc.com/understanding-peak-demand-charges/

Smarthours customers will be exempt from summer demand charges, but still have to pay the $27/mo connection charge.
Solar customers will do well on smarthours, panels produce highest output when rates are highest. Panels wont help much with demand charges (which smarthours customers dont pay) unless all high demand appliances are ran when solar is producing peak power.

Servicetech571
01-09-2017, 07:06 AM
http://newsok.com/article/5530204

OG&E wanted to reconfigure residential customer bills to better reflect their costs on the system. It proposed a doubling of the monthly customer service charge to more than $26, a change that several intervening parties in the case said would be too burdensome on customers. In return for that higher monthly charge, OG&E proposed lowering per-kilowatt hour rates on the energy portion of bills.

Minimum Bill? WTF?
Jackson rejected that, saying the demand charge would be too confusing to customers. He instead recommended a billing configuration that would guarantee a minimum amount of revenue per customer. It would be a straightforward energy consumption model, which would be adjusted to ensure each customer meets the "minimum bill" threshold.

Nick
01-09-2017, 07:13 AM
What the hell is a minimum bill?

Zuplar
01-09-2017, 07:25 AM
Sounds like same crap city of OKC has. My water and trash bill (no septic as I have a tank) has almost always been the minimum rate because I use at or below their minimum billed amount. Complete crap IMO especially since the minimum bill is constantly on a rise. I think when I moved in 5 years ago it was in the low $40's, now it's in the upper $50's, so I imagine in another 10 years the minimum bill for water and trash is going to be $100. Sometimes I wish I could just drill a well.

bombermwc
01-09-2017, 07:32 AM
Im not sure i disagree with the approach. There are some minimal fees they need to collect in order to cover the cost of providing service to the customer. Low consumers dont "pull their weight" in terms of paying for things like transmission. But i'd agree that if they're going to put in a minimum, then the consumer needs a reduced pkwh rate to make up for what they used to build in to that rate for the same purpose. You already pay for this with city and i believe gas. The job of the corporation commission would be to hold that to inflatio numbers and not allow OG&E to artificially raise the minimum rate. Any changes there should require approval IMO.

What i also expect OG&E to do is to no longer piss and moan about people with solar/wind. If they're collecting their minimum rate, they can't claim these guys are "mooching" anymore. Can't have your cake and eat it too folks. That whole thing was a ridiculous pile of dog crap anyway for the <1% of people that were a factor in that claim.

I'm usually against OG&E in most things because i feel like they screw customers over at ever opportunity. So it's rare that i agree, so this is a rare one indeed, but with provisos.

Nick
01-09-2017, 07:34 AM
Im not sure i disagree with the approach. There are some minimal fees they need to collect in order to cover the cost of providing service to the customer. Low consumers dont "pull their weight" in terms of paying for things like transmission. But i'd agree that if they're going to put in a minimum, then the consumer needs a reduced pkwh rate to make up for what they used to build in to that rate for the same purpose. You already pay for this with city and i believe gas. The job of the corporation commission would be to hold that to inflatio numbers and not allow OG&E to artificially raise the minimum rate. Any changes there should require approval IMO.
So the minimum bill is OG&E trying to recoup their outlay for transmission and hookups and the delivery of the service?

foodiefan
01-09-2017, 08:50 AM
interesting article in the DOK from late Dec. . . apparently OG&E already imposed an increase back in June. . .if the rate isn't approved they will have to refund some $9 million already collected from customers.

Corporation Commission Administrative Law Judge Ben Jackson recommended the company be granted a rate increase of $60.3 million.

While that still seems like a big increase, it is 35 percent less than what OG&E had proposed.

In fact, OG&E already implemented an interim $69.5 million rate increase at the end of June since the case still hadn’t been decided.

If the judge’s recommendation is approved by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, that would mean that OG&E would have to refund about $9 million that was collected during the interim period to customers.

Servicetech571
01-10-2017, 06:04 AM
Sounds like same crap city of OKC has. My water and trash bill (no septic as I have a tank) has almost always been the minimum rate because I use at or below their minimum billed amount. Complete crap IMO especially since the minimum bill is constantly on a rise. I think when I moved in 5 years ago it was in the low $40's, now it's in the upper $50's, so I imagine in another 10 years the minimum bill for water and trash is going to be $100. Sometimes I wish I could just drill a well.

The City is definitely out of control with their minimum fees. Yet the city wants customers to "squeeze every drop". If the City REALLY wants customers to "squeeze every drop", why not reduce the minimum fees, and charge more for the water?

ONG is similiar. Most customers are on "Plan B" paying a $34/mo service charge. BUT the gas itself is sold at cost. Minimal incentive to conserve fuel.

Zuplar
01-10-2017, 08:20 AM
The City is definitely out of control with their minimum fees. Yet the city wants customers to "squeeze every drop". If the City REALLY wants customers to "squeeze every drop", why not reduce the minimum fees, and charge more for the water?

ONG is similiar. Most customers are on "Plan B" paying a $34/mo service charge. BUT the gas itself is sold at cost. Minimal incentive to conserve fuel.

Yep, this is exactly my case on the water. After figuring out that I use quite a bit less than I'm billed for, I've started using what I pay for. I wouldn't say I waste water, but I definetely don't concern myself with running the faucet a little longer, or running sprinklers more. I figure if I'm paying for it I might as well use it. I think the minimum for water is pretty high, because I use average of everything else (gas and electric), but not apparently on water.

stick47
01-16-2017, 05:44 AM
We built on a one acre lot and have a total electric home with heat pump, a water well and septic system. So glad my total utility costs for 2200 sf are averaging less than $130/mo. #belikeTrump