PSNH agrees to cut administrative charges to competing power vendors
In a letter to the PUC on March 12, PSNH acknowledged that there was no basis in actual cost for two of the largest fees and reduced them to zero, pending further review by regulators.
The reduced charges will apply until and unless PSNH prevails in a process that starts with a hearing on permanent rates that is scheduled for June.
The fees at issue are the selection charge, collection charge, and the billing and payment charge.
When a customer switched from one unregulated supplier to another, PSNH was charging each $5 to process the switch. PSNH determined that there are no incremental costs associated with customers switching from (PSNH) service to a supplier, or from supplier to supplier, and is proposing to eliminate the charge.
The collection service charge was essentially a bad-debt fee of 0.25 percent on all collections by PSNH on behalf of unregulated suppliers.
“PSNH found that taking into consideration only the incremental costs associated with supplier services, collections would not meet the requirements of the cost of service study, and thus the company is proposing to remove the collection services charge from its tariff,” stated the letter to the PUC from PSNH attorney Matthew Fossum.
Gus Fromuth, managing partner at PNE, described the results of the PSNH cost-of-service study as “a complete and total victory for PNE in its case against PSNH for overcharging the residential customer switching charges.”
“We are pleased to see the recommended service charge reduced by more than 70 percent and that PSNH has finally acknowledged that there are not incremental costs associated with customers switching from default service to supply companies such as ENH Power,” said Emile Clavet, ENH co-owner. “Should this decision hold, this spring when setting our rates we hope to pass along even greater savings to new customers as well as to our current customers upon renewal.”
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