SOLON, OH - Consumer advocacy by the Ohio Consumers’ Counsel (OCC) and the Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council (NOPEC) led to a historic settlement at the PUCO resulting in FirstEnergy refunding $306 million in “significantly excessive” profits to 2.1 million customers. The first installment of the refunds, averaging $26.91 for residential customers, appear as bill credits on this month’s Cleveland Electric Illuminating, Ohio Edison and Toledo Edison bills. Non-residential customers received $2.68 per mWh.
The remainder of the refund will be paid out to customers as credits on their electric bills over the next five years. The average FirstEnergy residential customer will receive a total of $85.71 paid in installments as follows:
• $1.87 per month ($22.44 annually) per consumer (for $80 million in total will be credited in 2022, through a monthly bill credit).
• $1.40 per month ($16.80 annually) per consumer (for $60 million in total will be credited in 2023, through a monthly bill credit).
• $1.05 per month ($12.60 annually) per consumer (for $45 million in total will be credited in 2024, through a monthly bill credit).
• $0.58 per month ($6.96 annually) per consumer (for $25 million in total will be credited in 2025, through a monthly bill credit).
The settlement involves profits cases under a 2008 utility ratemaking law known as Senate Bill 221, which requires refunds of charges for “significantly excessive” utility profits. Previously the most any electric utility was required to refund to consumers for “significantly excessive” profits was $43 million from AEP Ohio about a decade ago. The 2008 law limits electric utility refunds to “significantly excessive” profits and allows electric utilities to keep excessive profits.
NOPEC is a non-profit group of over 240 Ohio communities that negotiates lower utility rates. As Ohio’s largest non-profit governmental energy aggregator supplying electricity and natural gas to over 1,000,000 accounts, NOPEC buys gas and electricity in bulk then passes the savings and benefits on to their customers. Since 2001, NOPEC has saved its customers hundreds of millions of dollars on their energy costs, provided education opportunities for Ohio students and residents, awarded $44 million in community energy-efficiency grants, and helped protect Ohio consumers by advocating for consumer-friendly energy policies. To learn more about NOPEC, visit nopec.org