Idaho Public Utilities Commission
Case No. IPC-E-11-06, Order No. 32227
May 3, 2011
Contact: Gene Fadness (208) 334-0339, 890-2712
Idaho Power requests reduction to annual PCA
Lower than anticipated costs of supplying power to its customers has resulted in a request from Idaho Power Company to the Idaho Public Utilities Commission to reduce the revenue coming into its power supply account by about $40.4 million, or an average 4.8 percent reduction effective June 1.
Every year on June 1, the Power Cost Adjustment (PCA) results in either a one-year surcharge or credit to customers depending on the previous year’s power supply costs. Power supply costs vary each year due to changes in Snake River streamflows, the amount of power the company has to buy, and the market price for that power. When snowpack and streamflows are normal or better, as was the case last winter and this spring, Idaho Power can generate more power from its hydroelectric projects. Hydro generation is less expensive for the company than generating from thermal sources or buying power from the regional market, which Idaho Power does during low-water years. When that happens, customers typically get a one-year increase or surcharge.
This year, however, the company proposes a one-year credit that varies according to customer class, ranging from 7.8 percent for industrial customers to 2.6 percent for small commercial customers. The largest class, residential customers, would receive about a 3.6 percent decrease, according to the company’s application.
The commission is taking comments on Idaho Power’s proposal through May 24. Comments are accepted via e-mail by accessing the commission’s homepage at www.puc.idaho.gov and clicking on "Comments & Questions About a Case." Fill in the case number (IPC-E-11-06) and enter your comments. Comments can also be mailed to P.O. Box 83720, Boise, ID 83720-0074 or faxed to (208) 334-3762.
Customers should also be aware that Idaho Power is asking the commission to approve two other rate adjustments, also effective June 1. These are separate cases and are related to the company’s annual Fixed Cost Adjustment (a proposed 0.36 percent increase) and pension expense recovery (a proposed 1.4 percent increase). If all three proposals are accepted, the net adjustment to customers would be an average 3 percent decrease in overall rates.
Customers can read more about each of these applications by going to the commission Website. Click on the electric icon, then on “Open Electric Cases,” and scroll down to Case No. IPC-E-11-06 for the Power Cost Adjustment, IPC-E-11-03 for the Fixed Cost Adjustment and IPC-E-11-04 for the pension expense adjustment.