According to the Office of the Ohio Consumers’ Counsel, from 2000 to 2016, Ohio’s electric utilities collected $14.67 billion in above-market charges from all customers regardless whether the customers were purchasing generation supply from a competitive supplier. Most of these charges were approved by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) to help the utilities manage through the transition from regulated pricing to market-based pricing.
Utilities continue to prevail in PUCO cases, however, resulting in new non-bypassable riders on customers to generate revenue needed to ameliorate the utilities’ (or their parent companies’) cash-flow problems and/or improve their profitability. In late 2016, the PUCO issued two rulings authorizing the collection of more than $1 billion of ratepayer money to prop up the corporate earnings of FirstEnergy and allowing an “unknown” amount for subsidies for unregulated AEP Ohio generation. In addition, Dayton Power & Light has a pending PUCO case that if approved would cost its customers another $625 million dollars over five years.
As consumers’ generation charges are dropping in the market as a result of electric generation deregulation, their non-generation charges, which in some cases include dozens of nonbypassable riders, are on the rise – eating away at customers’ overall savings with no corresponding benefits. These riders function as a new tax on families and businesses and are a drag on the state’s economy.
Read more in this recent OMA whitepaper: Ohio’s Electric Utilities’ Above-Market Charges Are Anti-Competitive For Ohio’s Consumers. 3/7/2017