|01/10: Rate caps expired in Pennsylvania Power and Light’s (PPL) service area on January 1, 2010. Customers of PPL are expected to see rates for electricity increase by an estimated 30 percent. Rate caps in Exelon Corporation’s and Allegheny Energy Incorporated’s service areas are set to expire at the beginning of 2011. Source: The Wall Street Journal http://online.wsj.com/
08/09: The Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission finalized measures designed to remove barriers to a competitive retail electric market in the Pennsylvania Power and Light service territory. Some of these measures include access to customer information databases for electric generation suppliers, data access through standardized transactions, different billing options, customer awareness and education programs, and commitments to a process for development of a uniform supplier tariff. Source: Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission http://www.puc.state.pa.us/
05/09: Senator Lisa M. Boscola filed a formal class-action complaint against the Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission (PUC) for failing to disclose Pennsylvania Power and Light’s (PPL) estimated rate increases after the electricity markets were deregulated in Pennsylvania. The PUC issues reports of electric rate changes in which it provides estimates on electric prices affected by the rate changes. In this case, the PUC stated that it could not provide electricity price estimates because PPL had already purchased its fuel and price estimates are performed prior to the purchase of any fuel. Source: State Senator Lisa M. Boscola http://www.senatorboscola.com/
01/09: The Public Utilities Commission of Pennsylvania held a hearing to acquire feedback from the public on Pennsylvania Power and Light’s (PPL) proposed default service program and energy procurement plan. The plan would be enacted once rate caps expire at the end of 2009, allowing the electric utility to base its rates on free market competition. Under the proposition, rates in the PPL service area could increase by 36 percent for the average residential consumer beginning in January 2010. Source: The Public Utilities Commission of Pennsylvania http://www.puc.state.pa.us/
08/08: The Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission approved a rate stabilization plan for PPL Electric Utilities Corporation, which is designed to allow customers to prepay in anticipation of large price increases for supply service that will occur when PPL’s generation rate caps expire on Dec. 31, 2009. In its filing, PPL projected a 34.5 percent increase for the average residential customer using 1,000 kWh per month. Because of its projected increase, PPL had sought approval to phase in the estimated 2010 rate increase. As part of the plan, PPL customers can choose to make additional payments and receive corresponding credits on their electric bills through Dec. 31, 2011. The plan is available to residential, small commercial, small industrial and certain street lighting customers. Source: Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission http://www.puc.state.pa.us/
10/06: The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) certified that the process used to determine the provider of last resort (POLR) prices for Pennsylvania Power Company (Penn Power) customers was transparent and non-discriminatory, and reflected market-based prices. The Commission voted 4-0 that the competitive bidding process produced electric generation prices for Penn Power that reflected prevailing market prices. The competitive bidding process was conducted by an independent group on behalf of Penn Power. The market-based prices meant that the average residential heating customer would see about a 20 percent increase in their total bill; the average residential non-heating consumer would see about a 33 percent increase in their total bill. The Commission verified that the new prices accurately reflected the results of the auction and checked the company’s calculations to ensure the new retail electricity prices accurately reflected the electricity costs resulting from the auction.
9/05: The proposed regulations from 2004 have taken effect. No other significant issues concerning deregulation have been raised.
1/05: New regulations proposed December 2004 would require default suppliers for small retail customers to offer at least 1 year contracts at fixed rates and obtain their power through competitive bids. These rules apply to "last resort" suppliers – those which supply power to customers who can't or don't choose to receive power through alternative suppliers. Current default rates are capped as a result of the restructuring related to the Electric Choice Law. The intent of these new regulations is to maintain service availability at reasonable terms even after the rate caps expire.
Companies must also offer residential and small business customers at least 1 year contracts with fixed prices, but those prices will be determined through the bidding process. Large commercial and industrial customers that use default service will be charged hourly rates unless a fixed rate is approved by the PUC.
2/04: As part of the deregulation process, PECO is required to turn over half of its electricity customers to competing energy suppliers. Since fewer than 1% of PECO's customers had voluntarily switched as of March 2003, PECO began requesting bids from suppliers. Customers were randomly assigned to the winning bidders and received a 1.25 percent discount from PECO's generation and transmission rates for at least one year. Those who wished to decline the switch could do so with no penalty.
PECO's rate caps will expire in 2010.
8/02: The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission issued an emergency order to stop New Power "from sending out additional make-up bills that are not consistent with our rules and regulation." All New Power customers that have already paid these bills are to be refunded.
8/01: The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) approved a settlement with GPU, Inc. and First Energy Corp (a merger between the two utilities is pending) that perserves customer rate caps, encourages customer participation in choosing alternative generation suppliers, increases support for renewable energy and conservation programs, and enables GPU to defer its wholesale power losses through 2005. Distribution rate caps were extended for 3 years to 2005. Total generation rates, including shopping credits and competitive transition charges, continue at the same levels through 2010 as established by GPU's restructuring settlement. Shopping credits will rise with a corresponding decrease in the competitive transition charge, which will enable customers more opportunity to find alternative suppliers for generation. The settlement also commits $15 million to renewable and sustainable energy development. And finally, through the establishment of a deferral mechanism that allows GPU to carry its wholesale power losses in a deferred account through 2010, the settlement addresses GPU's current financial concerns and enables it to continue meeting its obligations to purchase wholesale power for its customers.
1/01: As required under PECO's restructuring plan, 300,000 residential customers that had not chosen a competitive supplier were randomly chosen and switched to The New Power Company, which was chosen by PECO to provide "Competitive Discount Service" from March 2001 through January 2004. Customers may opt out of the program or choose another electricity supplier without penalty.
1/01: The PUC deferred the decision on GPU's rate increase request for recovery of wholesale power costs until May, when it will be heard with GPU's merger request (with First Energy). GPU claims projected losses in 2001 could exceed $145 million due to the rising costs of purchasing wholesale power. GPU voluntarily divested its generation assests, has not entered into long-term contracts for power, and must buy power on the wholesale market at increasing prices to serve its customer load.
12/00: GPU has asked the PUC to defer the losses from its rising costs of wholesale power purchases, due to rising fuel costs, to provide its default customers with power. A number of customers returned to GPU this summer following a rise in market prices. GPU was unable to procure through a 1999 auction, a supplier for 20 percent of its "provider of last resort" load. PECO, which initially also could not procure default power through an auction, recently was able to negotiate privately with New Power Company to supply part of its default load. NPC will offer discounted power to about 299,000 residential PECO customers until 2004. Customers may opt out and remain with PECO.
5/99: The PUC finalized rules for full consumer choice in the retail electricity market. By September 1999, utilities will mail information packages to all consumers that have not chosen a competitive supplier. The packages will contain information about consumer choice, the "price to compare," and a list of competitive suppliers serving their rate class and location.
6/98: The PUC began its consumer education program. An Electric Supplier Selection Form will be mailed to all consumers in the state to begin enrollment in the first part of the phase-in of competition, set to begin with two-thirds of consumers in January 1999. Sign-up for retail choice begins July 1, 1998. The final third of consumers will begin retail choice in January 2000. Most consumers are expected to realize savings of over 10 percent of what they now pay.