Customers of Pacific Gas & Electric may face a significant increase in their energy rates if the energy company has its way. PG&E, San Diego Gas & Electric, and Southern California Edison have presented a unified plan to levy an income-based fixed rate model, with higher-income residents paying more and lower-income households paying less.
The flat rate pricing scheme would affect all California customers who receive electrical service from those three firms.
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Bay Area Residents Might Pay a Little Less
Some Bay Area residents may have to pay more for electricity under a proposal requiring them to report their income and pay a fixed rate based on their income.
The three largest California utilities, PG&E, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas & Electric, have filed a joint petition with the state Public Utilities Commission outlining planned adjustments to monthly rates.
Those bills are determined mainly by how much power and gas clients use.
A new idea would include a fixed monthly payment based on the customers’ household income levels.
The three utilities are recommending a 33% reduction in electricity rates, which could reduce the cost of this portion of the bill.
In other words, if consumers can regulate their electricity consumption, they can reduce a portion of their bills.
According to PG&E, the proposal will reduce specific rates and make monthly charges more consistent. The publication indicates that electricity costs in the Bay Area have increased by approximately 14% over the past year. Edison’s spokesman emphasized that the change was “simply a restructuring of how we bill customers,” not an additional levy, and would not impact the company’s overall revenue.
What KTLA Reports About This
Between $28,000 and $69,999 per year, PG&E, Southern California Edison, and San Diego Gas & Electric would impose a $30 fixed tax, a $20 cost, and a $34 fee, respectively, on the electricity bills of middle-income households.
Sixty-nine thousand to one hundred eighty thousand dollar households would pay an additional $51 per month in PG&E and Edison districts or $73 per month in San Diego Gas and Electric’s grid. Costs range between $85 and $128 monthly for those with the most significant incomes. According to officials, the fees would pay for creating and maintaining electricity infrastructure and provide financial assistance to low-income customers.
In exchange, San Diego Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison would reduce residential rates by 42% and 33%, respectively.
According to The Mercury News, PG&E anticipates that many customers would have lower costs, while those who will pay more will only have a “relatively small bill impact.” KTLA reports a third party would verify each customer’s income, which would not be stored at the utilities.
If commissioners accept the changes by next summer, Californians can expect them by 2025.
The proposal aims to provide more consistent monthly charges and reduce rates by up to 33% for residential customers. However, customers must report their income to determine their fixed monthly payments.
The fees collected would pay for electricity infrastructure and provide financial assistance to low-income customers. If the proposal is accepted by state commissioners by next summer, Californians can expect these changes by 2025.
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