PUC approves electric rate increase for MECO

| May 24, 2012 | 3 Comments

Starting June 1, the average household on Molokai will pay an additional $5.25 a month on its electric bill with the approval by the Public Utilities Commission for an interim rate increase for Maui Electric Company.

Photovoltaic panels, like these on the roof of Molokai General Hospital, will better integrate into the Molokai electrical grid with MECO’s improvements that will be funded, in part, by its latest interim rate increase.

The increase, granted by the PUC on Monday, reflects a settlement agreement between Maui Electric and the state Division of Consumer Advocacy, according to MECO. The commission is expected to continue to review MECO’s request for a permanent rate hike, and, if a lower final increase is approved, then the difference will be refunded to customers with interest, the utility said in an announcement.

The increase is expected to generate an additional $13.1 million in revenue for the utility.

The estimated increase for Molokai is based on a household using 400 kilowatts a month. The $5.25 monthly increase would raise the average monthly bill to $193.21.

As part of this rate hike, MECO said it will now have the revenue to cover the operations and maintenance costs of better integrating renewable energy sources into the electrical grid. Upgrades and improvements to the Pala’au power generating facility will also be made that will increase efficiency, improve reliability and reduce emissions.

The utility’s original request for a rate increase was submitted in July 2011 and sought a 6.7 percent increase, or $27.5 million in revenue. MECO sought the interim rate hike May 14.

Category: Business, maui county, News, Sustainability

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  1. mkklolo says:

    These are the same guys that want to rape our land and offshore waters for “alternative energy” to send to Oahu. Every year they ask us to bend over for more of the same and the rubber-stamp, utility owned and operated PUC gives it to them over just-for-show resistance from the so-called “Consumer Advocate”.

    MECO estimated our 2011 average rate was $0.43/kwh or about 3 to 4 times what average mainland rates are. How much is too much? Oahu customers are only paying a fraction of that to run their AC units 24/7 and light up all their car dealerships lots. Why should we have to pay these rates AND give up our fragile environment to sustain that wasteful sink hole for power.

  2. kalaniua ritte says:

    eh,may be people will stop wasteing electricity now.but $5 a month more…just turn off your lights 10 min earlier each nite and you’ll be good.

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