The Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) recently approved a rate increase of 6.56 percent for all GVEA members. This increase is effective January 1, 2016 and is part of our Simplified Rate Filing (SRF) process, which allows GVEA to adjust rates every six months and is applied evenly across all rate categories (residential and commercial). This increase from $0.10800 to $0.11508 per kilowatt-hour will only affect the Utility Charge line of a bill. The effect to the bottom line of an average monthly residential bill of 600 kWh is an increase of $4.25.
The major drivers for the Utility Charge increase is to pay for the capital recovery of two large projects – the restart of Healy Unit 2, as well as the last factors of Eva Creek Wind. The benefit both these projects provide is long-term rate stability by allowing us to burn less oil.
Here’s an historical review of an average residential bill of 600 kWh:
- December 2013: $147.40
- December 2014: $136.02
- December 2015: $127.64
- January 2016 : $131.89
To calculate how this increase affects your bill, visit our website here.
Another line of your electric bill is the Fuel & Purchase Power (F&PP) charge. This component ties directly to the price of fuel needed to generate power, as well as the cost to purchase power from other utilities. This rate is adjusted quarterly and is billed based on kWh consumption.
The savings from Eva Creek Wind has helped our F&PP decline since 2013. F&PP continued to decline over the past year due to both lower oil prices and the restart of Healy Unit 2, which allows us to burn less expenseive coal.
GVEA has a varied fuel mix: coal, oil, wind, hydro and natural gas. To learn more, visit our web site here.
If the rate factors of an electric bill seem complicated, you’re correct. But be assured that GVEA is constantly seeking the best generation rates for our members.