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PUCO approves capacity charge extension; testimony continues in ESP case

by on May 30, 2012

(Story by Jeff Rennie)

Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) commissioners today approved an order extending AEP Ohio’s interim generation capacity charge. The order continues the current two-tiered capacity charge in place since March 7 that was set to expire May 31. The extension remains in effect until July 2.

 

“Today’s decision by the PUCO to extend the temporary capacity charge is appropriate,” said Pablo Vegas, AEP Ohio president and chief operating officer. “We commend the PUCO for taking the time necessary to fully consider the implications that moving to a competitive market in Ohio will have for electricity consumers and AEP Ohio.”

The commission established the capacity charge, through which the company offers generation capacity to Competitive Retail Electric Service (CRES) providers, at $146 MW-day for the first 21 percent of each AEP Ohio customer class. In addition, all customers of governmental aggregations approved on or before November 8, 2011, have access to that pricing. The commission set the second-tier charge for capacity at $255/MW-day.

The capacity charge is being considered by the commission in case number 10-2929-EL-UNC.

Meanwhile, the evidentiary hearing in the Electric Security Plan (ESP) case – case number 11-346-EL-SSO — continues at the PUCO offices in Columbus. Company witnesses have completed their testimony and cross examination by attorneys representing the 46 special interest groups that have intervened in the case and the PUCO staff. Witnesses representing a number of the interveners have appeared on the witness stand in recent days. Originally, the PUCO attorney examiners expected the evidentiary hearing to conclude June 8; however, that schedule is subject to change.

Once the evidentiary hearing concludes, attorneys representing the company, interveners and PUCO staff will participate in oral arguments scheduled for July 3 at the PUCO offices in Columbus. The company is hopeful that the commission will deliver an opinion and order in the ESP case by late July.

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