Friday, July 25, 2014

"Fee" Increases: Austin Energy thinks you're stupid

"nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God."
1 Corinthians 6:10 [Emphasis added]

Via Austin Affordability:
When Austin gets embroiled in a formal Austin Energy rate case, it brings on tons of media attention and large crowds of customers at public meetings. The rate hearings can last for several months. What you may not realize though is that about 35% of your electric bill comes from the fuel charge. The bureaucratic name for it on your bill is the “power supply adjustment charge.”

Well, that charge is set to go up in a few months by 4.4%, which is on top of the 4.6% increase that we got last year. So, we’re talking about a 9% increase over a two-year period. Like so many City regulations and policies these days, the Austin Energy fuel charge needs a good thorough public review and much better transparency. It’s like one of those Facebook relationship status deals, where somebody says “It’s complicated.”

Supposedly, the fuel charges are passed through to the customer at no more than what it costs the utility. But when we hear that natural gas prices have fallen like a rock over the last several years, why would Austin Energy be jacking up the cost? And why would the increases compound themselves instead of leveling off? This is where I think Austin Energy has a lot of explaining to do.
Read the whole thing here.

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