A new electric rate plan for Orange and Rockland Utilities was approved today by the state Public Service Commission.
The three-year plan will affect O&R electric customers’ bills beginning July 1. O&R filed the request on July 29, 2011, kicking off a public review process with the state Department of Public Service and interested parties, including consumer advocacy groups and local governments.
As a result of the approval today, effective July 1, the total electric bill for a typical residential electric full service customer using a monthly average of 677 kilowatt hours (kWh) would increase overall on average of $3.06 per month, from $116.80 to $119.86.
O&R says the rate plan provides for tens of millions of dollars in investment in the communities O&R serves in Rockland, Orange and Sullivan counties in New York for energy efficiency and for building new substations and upgrading infrastructure, including transmission and distribution lines and facilities, to provide reliable service.
In addition to enabling investments to help provide O&R’s 221,000 New York electric customers with power, at the same time, the utility says the plan will allow O&R to continue to attract the required capital to finance these projects at a reasonable cost.
The new electric rate plan reflects a levelized increase in revenues of $15.223 million per year for three years.
The increases in electric revenues are 1.7 percent, 2.7 percent, and 2.7 percent on a total bill basis and 3.9 percent, 5.8 percent and 5.4 percent on a delivery basis for the three years starting July 1, 2012, July1, 2013 and July 1, 2014.
This rate filing only covers the cost of delivering electricity to O&R’s customers. The other two components that affect the monthly electric bill are the cost of the electricity itself --- the largest portion of the bill --- which is set by largely unregulated market activity, and taxes and fees. O&R’s energy efficiency programs are aimed at lowering the customer usage of electricity. When that usage declines, so do the charges for the commodity, taxes and fees.