Calif. Electricity Deregulation Drops Off, Smaller End-Users Left Holding the Bag

Following the California Public Utilities Commission decision in late March to terminate end-users' rights to choose their own power providers, utilities will be passing along to consumers a couple billion dollars in costs incurred during the recent power crisis, reports the L.A. Times.

03/25/2002


Following the California Public Utilities Commission decision in late March to terminate end-users' rights to choose their own power providers, utilities plan to pass along to consumers a couple billion dollars in costs incurred during the recent power crisis, reports the L.A. Times .

However, along with the decision to end deregulation, the CPUC also ruled that the state's largest end-users—who entered into contracts with alternate providers prior to September 20—can keep those contracts, thereby avoiding the extra costs.

Even though the CPUC plans to levy an exit fee on these large end-users to help cover the costs of the state's power purchases, consumer groups are concerned that the medium and small end-users will be stuck with the majority of the bill, paying approximately $340 million per year for the next five years, at least.

While California end-users may not see higher power bills as a result of this decision, consumer groups claim that it may take quite a bit longer for the already inflated rates to come down.





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