FirstEnergy wasted no time hitting WV customers with its new surcharge to pay for the Harrison Power plant. The company filed revised rate schedules for its customers last Thursday. The rate increase is effective starting October 9.
Residential customers will see their rates rise .607 cents per kilowatt hour. For a household using 1000 kwh per month, this translates into a $6.07 per month electric bill increase. The increase will be a little bigger, because this rate increase is also subject to any taxes that are added to your bill on per kwh charges.
But what? I thought FirstEnergy told us something different in their press release:
Mon Power and Potomac Edison today agreed to conditions included in the Public Service Commission of West Virginia’s order authorizing the completion of the companies’ generation transaction. The transaction will reduce an average residential customer’s bill by about $1.50 per month.
How can rates be going down $1.50 when they are going up $6.07? Because FirstEnergy’s claim is based on a 16 month repayment to Mon Power/Potomac Edison rate payers because part of the Harrison transaction involved Mon Power selling its 8% share of the Pleasants Power Station back to FirstEnergy. This transaction resulted in a $25 million payment that will be credited to WV customers’ bills resulting in a net decrease of $1.50.
So the total transaction impact on a household using 1000 kwh looks like this:
Total credit for Pleasants sale – $7.57
Minus total new surcharge for Harrison purchase – $6.07
Leaving a remaining credit to customers of $1.50
But that $1.50 goes away after 16 months. The Harrison rate increase will remain on our bills for the next 30 years. Technically, the Harrison surcharge will end when the Pleasants credit ends in April 2014. At that time, the Harrison rate increase will be incorporated into FirstEnergy’s WV base rates and will continue until the Harrison plant is closed. The Pleasants credit will simply disappear in April 2014, leaving only 30 years of the Harrison rate increase.
Read the FirstEnergy statement on the Harrison case again. Do you see any of this explanation there? No? That’s because the Harrison case has been FirstEnergy flimflam from start to finish, from the bogus and rigged “resource plan” to the half truths about the Harrison rate impact.