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New River Light and Power Company Requests Several Rate Increases From the N.C. Utilities Commission

By Jesse Wood

Oct. 29, 2012. New River Light and Power Company notified customers last week about a request made to the N.C. Utilities Commission on Oct. 1 regarding several rate increases. 

The letter states: “Each year, New River receives a purchased power adjustment from our generation supplier, Duke Energy. This purchase power adjustment reflects the difference between the actual and estimated cost of fuel and generation expense. New River made a request to the Commission to pass this purchased power adjustment on to our customers.” 

The rate increases are 2.6 percent for residential, 2.8 percent to commercial, 3.6 percent to large commercial, 3.3 percent to industrial and 3 percent to ASU. New River Light and Power Company states the residential rate hike will amount to less than $2.74 increase per month for the average residential customer.

The letter also suggested that customers use fluorescent lights, replace out-of-date appliances, identify sources of possible heat loss, such as drafty windows or doors and more, to lower costs.

The N.C. Utilities Commission is accepting public comments, including written statements, regarding this increase. However, the written statements are not considered competent evidence unless those persons appear at a public hearing, which would be held if the commission receives a high number of comments, and testify in Raleigh.  

View the whole notice below, which also contains a request for a one-time credit to customers.

State of N.C. Utilities Commission Notice to Public Regarding Rate Increase

Notice is hereby given that New River Light & Power Company (New River) has requested the North Carolina Utilities Commission to approve the following two changes to its rates:

  • 1. a one-time refund of $288,992 and accompanying interest to customers associated with a refund of wholesale power costs from its supplier, Blue Ridge EMC;
  • 2. an adjustment to its base rates for usage on and after January 14, 2012, to pass through to its customers the increased cost of purchased power from Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation (BREMCO).

The amount of the increase to New River’s customers will be approximately $510,303 per year. The increase will be applied to New River’s customers as a uniform increase to the kilowatt-hour (kWh) energy charge (excluding lighting schedules). The additional revenue produced by the increase will be the same as the increased cost of purchased power from BREMCO, adjusted for the effects of gross receipts tax and the utility regulatory fee.

New River has also requested that it be allowed to adjust its rates for service rendered after January 14, 2012 to include an Experience Modification Factor (EMF) in its rates to true-up revenues charged for purchased power costs in 2012 to actual purchased power costs incurred for that year.

The total of these changes results in a proposed increase of $0.002742 per kWh. Such an increase will result in the monthly bill of an average residential customer using 1,000 kWh from $104.70 to $107.44. The approximate percentage increases in customers’ bills, by rate schedule, are as follows (actual percentages may differ depending on specific customers’ usage amounts):

  • Residential 2.6% 
  • Schedule G (Commercial) 2.8% 
  • Schedule GL (Large Commercial) 3.6% 
  • Schedule I (Industrial) 3.3% 
  • Schedule A (App. State Univ.) 3.0%

Persons desiring to intervene in this matter as formal parties of record should file a motion under Commission Rules R1-6, R1-7, and R1-19 not later than 45 days after the date of this notice. Persons desiring to present testimony or evidence at a hearing should so advise the Commission.

Persons desiring to send written statements to inform the Commission of their position in the matter should address their statements to Renee’ Vance, Chief Clerk, North Carolina Utilities Commission, 4325 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-4325. However, such written statements cannot be considered competent evidence unless those persons appear at a public hearing and testify concerning the information contained in their written statements.

If a significant number of requests for a public hearing are received within 45 days after the date of this notice, the Commission may schedule a public hearing. The Public Staff of the North Carolina Utilities Commission is authorized by statute to represent the using and consuming public in proceedings before the Commission.

Written statements to the Public Staff should include any information which the writer wishes to be considered by the Public Staff in its investigation of the matter, and such statements should be addressed to Robert P. Gruber, Executive Director, Public Staff, 4326 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-4326.