|01/06: The Massachusetts Department of Telecommunications and Energy (DTE) ruled that customers who were using alternate electricity suppliers, but switched to the default electricity service, did not have the option to switch back to using the alternate electricity supplier service for a period of six months. The DTE mandated this legislation because it was difficult for a utility to plan its energy needs if an excessive amount of service switching occurred. Source: Department of Telecommunications and Energy
9/05: March 1st marked the end of the transitional service known as Standard Offer. Customers who were on this rate moved to the market-based rate, Basic Service (formerly known as Default Service). Basic Service is priced differently than Standard Offer Service. Under Standard Offer Service, the electric company purchased electricity using long-term contracts. Under Basic Service, the electric company purchases the electricity supply on the open market.
1/05: Standard Offer Service (SOS) will expire February 28, 2005. SOS customers can expect a rate increase of approximately 7.5% as they are shifted to default rates. Default rates are set every six months.
3/04: No significant issues concerning deregulation have been raised.
8/01: The Department of Telecommunications and Energy approved fuel adjustment rate increases for standard offer rates by 1.23 cents per kWh for most customers of Massachusetts utilities. Utilities submitted Standard Offer Fuel Adjustment Filings with the DTE requesting increases in standard offer rates to reflect the rising cost of fuel to generate electricity.
7/01: In June, the DTE, seeking to boost customer participation in the open electricity market, issued an order for utilities to release, with customer approval, default customers' information to competitive suppliers. Suppliers may request names, addresses, and rate classes of default service customers.
7/00: The DTE issued an order that will allow utilities to base their rates for default service on the wholesale bid prices, beginning January 2001. Utilities complained that the required rate, set below the cost of wholesale power, was causing them to lose money on default customer accounts. Utilities may begin issuing competitive bids seeking 6-month to 1-year contracts for the power needed to serve their default service customers. Default service is defined as those customers who have left their competitive supplier, or are new to the utility's territory.
7/00: The DTE is considering two courses of action, as required by the restructuring legislation passed in 1998. The law requires the DTE to consider opening metering, billing, and information services to competition, and also requires the DTE to look into eliminating exclusive service territories for investor-owned utilities.
5/98: Education program for consumers begins with showing the labels that will disclose the price of electricity, generation sources, and air emission contents.
3/98: The DTE issued rules for distribution, default generation services, standard offer generation, aggregation requirements, and ownership of meters.
2/98: The DTE issued implementation rules for the restructured industry. Included are licensing and information disclosure for retail suppliers and provisions for public interest programs, standard offer service, and utility transition cost recovery filings.
11/97: The DTE's final decision is to officially open the retail electricity market to competition by March 1, 1998.