By PAMELA SCOTT JOHNSON
July 26, 2012
Special to the Daily News
Today, the Public Service Commission of West Virginia issued an Order in the Appalachian Power Company and Wheeling Power Company, dba American Electric Power’s (AEP) annual expanded net energy cost (ENEC) case. Under the Commission Order, the level of current electric rates will not increase.
The costs to obtain fuel to generate electricity and purchase power are the largest expenses for an electric utility and make up the largest component of customer rates. In an ENEC case, customer rates are adjusted to reflect only projected changes in the utility’s cost of fuel and purchased power, specified environmental compliance and construction costs, and to true-up recovery of actual ENEC costs for the previous period. The ENEC process does not involve the recovery of profit or rate of return on investment.
There are still several cases involving AEP that remain before the Commission that may impact residential rates in the future, including the application by Century Aluminum for a special rate for electricity and the anticipated Securitization case in which AEP is expected to seek recovery of its deferred under-recovered ENEC costs through low cost bonds, pursuant to legislation passed by the legislature earlier this year.
AEP serves over 429,000 customers in Boone, Brooke, Cabell, Clay, Fayette, Greenbrier, Jackson, Kanawha, Lincoln, Logan, Marshall, Mason, McDowell, Mercer, Mingo, Monroe, Nicholas, Ohio, Putnam, Raleigh, Roane, Summers, Wayne, and Wyoming Counties.