Wednesday, May 31, 2017

PUC Alerts Consumers Of June 1 Price Changes For Electric, Urges Customers To Shop For Better Rates

Public Utility Commission Wednesday alerted consumers that on June 1 most electric utilities will adjust electric generation prices charged to non-shopping, or default service, customers.
“The upcoming price changes, combined with the increase use of electricity that we typically see during the long, hot days of summer, makes this a very good time for consumers to evaluate their energy options,” said PUC Chairman Gladys M. Brown. “We encourage consumers to carefully review their electric bills, understand the rates they will be paying and explore the PUC’s official electric shopping website,, for details on competitive offers, along with tips for energy conservation and savings.”
In most areas of Pennsylvania, consumers can choose who supplies their electricity, based on lowest price or other factors, such as renewable energy.
Customers not choosing a competitive electric generation supplier continue to receive default service from the utility, with the cost per kilowatt hour (kWh) billed as a pass-through cost to the customer based on wholesale market prices.  
By law, the utility cannot make a profit on electric generation, and the PUC does not control the price of the generation portion of the electric bill., the PUC’s nationally recognized website for electric choice, provides consumers with valuable information on the shopping process.  A model for other states and countries, the website enables consumers to quickly compare offers from competitive suppliers.
As of June 1, electric distribution companies with more notable changes in their PTCs include:
-- PPL Electric, with an estimated increase from 7.439 cents to 8.493 cents per kWh, a 14.2 percent increase;
-- Penn Power, with an estimated increase from 5.884 cents to 6.674 cents per kWh, a 13.4 percent increase;
-- West Penn Power, with an estimated increase from 5.975 cents to 6.602 cents per kWh, a 10.5 percent increase;
-- Wellsboro Electric, with an estimated increase from 6.931cents to 8.192 cents per kWh, an 18.2 percent increase;
-- Met-Ed, with an estimated decrease from 6.964 cents to 6.018 cents per kWh, a 13.6 percent decrease; and
-- Citizens’ Electric, with an estimated decrease from 8.16 cents to 6.64 cents per kWh, an 18.6 percent decrease.
Other electric utilities, including Duquesne Light, PECO and Penelec, will see only a slight change in their respective PTCs, though the Commission still encourages customers to explore their options in those service areas.
Chairman Brown noted that when generation prices change, consumers often see an increase in supplier offers being promoted via door-to-door sales in neighborhoods, over the phone, through the mail or online.  
She encouraged consumers to thoroughly review their options and understand all terms and conditions before entering into any supplier contract.
“We urge consumers to be aware of all their energy shopping options and make informed decisions based on their specific needs,” Chairman Brown said.  “Shoppers can use the PUC’s official website to confirm details of a particular offer and then compare that offer to others that may be available –  helping make informed decisions about their energy supply.”
Enhanced consumer protections crafted by the Commission allow customers to switch suppliers, or return to default service, in as few as three business days once the utility has been notified.
Statewide, nearly 2.1 million residential and business customers receive their electric generation from competitive suppliers, representing approximately two-thirds of the Commonwealth’s entire electric load.
For more information, visit the PUC’s website.

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