CHARLESTON — Customers with Appalachian Power will see an increase on their monthly bills in the near future.
On Wednesday evening, the Public Service Commission announced it has “conditionally approved” a Modified Rate Base Cost tracker and surcharge for Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power Companies and also imposed a three year moratorium on the Companies filing for a base rate increase.
According to a news release from the PSC, the purpose of the tracker and surcharge is to allow the Companies limited cost recovery related to capital investments made between rate cases.
“The Companies originally requested $48.2 million to cover rate base increases since their last base rate case,” stated the release. “The Commission reduced that amount to $44.2 million. The average residential customer will see an increase of 6.12% on their monthly bill.”
Reportedly, the surcharge goes into effect in September.
“With this Order, the Commission is underscoring the need for utility companies to invest in their infrastructure while we stabilize rates and avoid frequent large base rate increases,” said PSC Chairman Charlotte Lane.
The news release further stated:
While the Companies’ surcharge is a new concept, the Commission has, at the direction of the West Virginia Legislature and on its own, approved similar surcharges to enable expedited cost recovery for natural gas and water utility companies. The Legislature has authorized the Commission to expedite cost recovery outside of base rate cases for certain expenses of electric utility companies.
The Consumer Advocate Division, the West Virginia Energy Users Group, the Kanawha County Commission and Steel of West Virginia were all granted intervenor status. APCo/WPCo have approximately 463,000 customers in 23 West Virginia Counties.
Additional information, including the Final Order, is available on the Commission website: www.psc.state.wv.us by referencing Case No. 20-1012-E-P.