Consumers of Central Negros Electric Cooperative will be charged an additional P0.0709 per kilowatt hour per month effective August 1, after the Energy Regulatory Commission ordered all electric power utilities to collect the Universal Charge from all end users, CENECO president Arnel Lapore said yesterday.
The ERC on August 1 granted the provisional approval of P4,146,636,906 out of the P17,072,239,450 sought by the National Power Corporation–Small Power Utilities Group to be recovered through the Universal Charge to cover shortfalls in the Missionary Electrification subsidy for 2003 to 2009.
The ERC saw the need to provide NPC-SPUG with immediate relief so that it can continue its mission of providing electricity to the far-flung and mostly island group SPUG areas.
Accordingly, the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corporation was authorized, for a period of one year, to release to the NPC-SPUG the amount of P4,146,636,906.00, sourced from the Universal Charge for Missionary Electrification Fund.
Further, the ERC directed all distribution utilities and the NGCP to collect UC-ME charge in the amount of P0.0709/kwh per month from its customers from the August 2011 billing period and the same be remitted to PSALM, on or before the 15th day of the succeeding month, until otherwise ordered by the ERC.
Lapore said the purpose of the additional assessment is to help subsidize areas not reached by the transmission lines like Bantayan and Siquijor.
Because they cannot be reached, their operation cost is higher so their consumers cannot afford the cost of electricity rates so this will be subsidized by consumers nationwide through universal charges, he said.
Lapore said that starting August 1, 2011, PSALM will charge all power consumers P0.0709/kwh per month. He cited for example that if an end user consumes 300/kwh per month he will be charged an additional P21.27 and if he consumes 1,000/kwh per month he will be assessed an additional P70.90 per month.
This is being ran by PSALM and its overall impact is to generate P4,146,636,906 to be able to sustain the small power utilities groups, he said.*CGS