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A Letter from AEP President and CEO Nick Akins

by on March 6, 2012

Today’s edition of the Columbus Dispatch included an important editorial (“Reasonable Request”) regarding the future of electric generation in Ohio. As you may be aware, our state is at a crucial moment in determining the environment for competitive retail generation where regulatory certainty and stability are critically important in order to attract jobs and investment in Ohio.

AEP has fully embraced the state’s decision to move to electricity competition and is prepared to move forward through a fair and reasonable transition much like other utilities did. During the last decade, with the support and encouragement of the PUCO, AEP Ohio committed its low-cost power plants to serve our customers and avoided implementing higher market rates. That commitment cannot be changed overnight and will last three years into the future. Now competitors, most of whom don’t have investments in Ohio and many who own no assets at all, want to use AEP Ohio’s plants to serve our customers using an arbitrary price as a basis for paying for the use of those plants. This price is extremely low, would have severe and immediate financial consequences for AEP, and could lead to unstable conditions for future investment in Ohio.

To have a healthy competitive environment in any industry, more than one company needs to be capable of competing on a level playing field. Without a reasonable transition to a fair competitive framework, Ohio’s economic recovery is not sustainable due to uncertainty for investors, and long term price instability for electric service.

I do believe that competitive electricity markets can work for Ohio. We ask for a fair transition to market that includes regulatory certainty so that all Ohioans can be successful. AEP Ohio will file a modified Electric Security Plan (ESP) with the PUCO by the end of March that will outline a path toward this goal.

On February 27, AEP Ohio filed a motion for relief and expedited action with the PUCO to halt the financial losses sustained as a result of the Commission’s decision on February 23 to revoke its approval of the company’s ESP plan, which the Commission had approved on December 14 and modified on January 23. We have requested that the Commission set the capacity charge that alternative suppliers must pay to use AEP’s generating assets at $255/MWday until a final ESP has been approved.

We ask that you please call or email the Commission asking them to take immediate and favorable action on AEP Ohio’s petition.

If you want your comments heard at the commission, please specifically state (preferably at the top of the comment section) that you want your comments to be docketed in case nos. 11-346-EL-SSO & 11-348-EL-SSO. To send an email, please go to: http://www.puco.ohio.gov. On the lower left hand side of the screen is a section called “Be Heard.” Click on the “submit a comment” link. Once there, you will need to fill out your contact information. There is space at the bottom for comments (limit 6000 characters).

You can also call the Commission Monday-Friday between 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at (800) 686-7826.

You can write the Commission at:

ATTN: IAD
Public Utilities Commission of Ohio
180 E. Broad St.
Columbus, Ohio 43215-3793

And, finally, you can fax a letter to the Commission 24 hours a day at: (614) 752-8351.

Thank you,

Nick Akins
AEP President and Chief Executive Officer

From → Advocacy

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