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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news May 25, 2016

2/12/2013 2:31:00 PM
Rate hike from APS goes into effect in March
By Ken Hedler
Contributing Reporter

While energy efficiency has reduced electricity use, customers of Arizona Public Service will see their bills increase in March from an average of 38 cents to $2.75 per month to offset increased infrastructure costs.

The $2.75 charge will stay for four years while the lower rate of 38 cents could change once a year over the same time frame, according to Damon Gross, a spokesman for APS in Phoenix. He added that the charge could be as low as 26 cents.

He said consumers will pay the lower cost if they select the new option of Lost Fixed Cost Recovery percentage of a bill charge. The $2.75 charge would apply if consumers were to accept the existing customer charge of the Flat Charge Option.

A notice to APS customers states they will pay more because the Arizona Corporation Commission this past May approved new rates.

The new rates have to do with an energy-efficiency program, ACC Communications Director Rebecca Wilder said. Energy efficiency includes using compact fluorescent light bulbs and installing solar panels.

"The company encourages people to use less energy, but the company still has fixed costs they need to recover," Wilder said.

Those fixed costs include power lines, other infrastructure, service and "the cost of bringing power to the customer," Wilder said.

Wilder said the rate hike for APS emerged from a settlement agreement that included parties such as AARP and the Residential Utility Consumer Office.

Gross concurred, saying the LFCR charge came out of those talks.

"We've encouraged our customers to be more energy efficient," Gross said. "And they are saving a lot of money, and that is great. The challenge is when our customers took these measures it was reducing the amount of revenue that we recovered for fixed costs."

Gross said the ACC mandates a 22 percent cut in electricity use by 2020. He added the typical APS customer would pay 38 cents more per month based on the use of 1,100 kilowatt-hours.

"This is a nominal fee that will enable us to continue energy efficiency," Gross said.

The average APS customer pays $132 per month based on 1,100 kilowatt-hours, Gross said.

He advises APS customers to contact the utility company to select the LFCR or flat rates. The toll-free number is 877-371-6820.

For additional information on the rate settlement, go to

Taylor Waste

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Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, February 18, 2013
Article comment by: Mary Heartman

Did anyone besides me complain back in March 2012 when aps announced their petition to raise rates? That was the time to do it.

Hopefully, our new Arizona Corporation Commissioners will consider the fact many of us ratepayers also experienced decreased income and have fixed costs ourselves. If not, I hope more voters will yell at them. Complaining to aps is a lost cause. You just get snippy letters from the complaint department.

On the other hand, if we're for the aps partnerships that installed solar at local schools, helping them reduce costs and thus saving property taxpayers rate hikes, those costs do have to be covered somehow. It's not completely cut and dried. Does anyone have any ideas besides asking ratepayers in Apo to help subsidize improvements in Cottonwood?

Posted: Monday, February 18, 2013
Article comment by: Clarkdale Resident

Maybe if all the utility companies including APS, Unisource etc. would quit buying new vehicles, they wouldn't have to raise the rates under the name "infrastructure costs". I don't think these companies need a new vehicle to sit in while they read your meters with a pair of binoculars, which in my book is pure laziness.

Posted: Thursday, February 14, 2013
Article comment by: Slater Slater

Just maybe APS has investments in Solar.
Go figure

Posted: Thursday, February 14, 2013
Article comment by: Sarcastic Bully

Mr. Gross how did you get so smart?

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Hang on to your hats. You ain't seen nothin yet.

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Article comment by: Slater Slater

Come on people,You can get solar and pay it
off in 25yrs to save nothing cause you'll b dead.

Posted: Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Article comment by: Audrey Parker

Gross, a fine example of the double-speak practitioner. Native Americans would describe him as someone speaking with forked tongue. Customers make every effort to conserve, energy, reduce their bills. And? Tough cheddar says Mr. Gross, now you've reduced our revenue and you gotta pay. Hypocrite.

Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Article comment by: two cents

So what are they trying to say, are we being charged more for trying to reduce our carbon footprint on this planet? We do what they tell us and use less energy and they raise our rates. What a slap in the face.
What they are telling us is that for every house that reduces its electricity needs, means an increase in costs for everyone. I don't understand this kind of business. If we raised our children that way, we would be punishing them for doing what we asked them to do. Maybe, just maybe, they could find a way to reduce their operating costs.
I guess i'm a little dense but I only see bad business and the same type bullying that big oil uses. Use less gas, and they raise the prices and continue to make record profits. use less electricity and your bill stays the same or goes up and your savings for installing solar is nullified . Is everything in this country crooked? Or is it just this state?
How many other power companies in this country are raising their rates because people are trying to do the right thing, and help clean up the air on this planet?
just my two cents for what its worth

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