ComEd and Ameren file rate impact reports with the ICC Decrease electricity rates to come
The Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) received new annual Rate Impact Reports from Commonwealth Edison Company (ComEd) and Ameren Illinois (Ameren) pursuant to Illinois Public Act 99-0906, also known as the Future Energy Jobs Act (FEJA), signed into law by Governor Rauner on December 7, 2016.
FEJA, which took effect on June 1, ensures numerous customer protections, including rate impact caps for retail electric customers. The act requires Illinois’ two largest electric public utilities to annually file both a Residential and a Commercial and Industrial (C&I) rate impact report with the ICC, with initial reports due no later than June 30, 2017.
The reports are meant to calculate the projected changes in monthly charges to retail Residential customers, as well as C&I electric customers with demand of 10,000 kilowatts or less, associated with the implementation of FEJA requirements. These programs include the Illinois Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard, the Zero Emission Standard, Distributed Energy Rebate programs and Low-Income Support programs.
Reports from both companies show these future energy investments are expected to result in bill decreases during 2017 and, on average, over the entire 10 year projection period for Residential and C&I electric customers. The reports exclude projections for changes in other variables that could potentially impact rates and consider only FEJA related impacts.
FEJA also contains rate protections for larger commercial customers. No rate impact reports are due in 2017 for such customers. However, beginning in 2018, Ameren and ComEd are required to submit an annual notice to the Commission and automatically adjust rates if necessary to ensure that rate caps are met.
In subsequent filings due in 2018, the ICC will review actual rate impact reports to ensure average residential monthly charges resulting from these programs do not exceed $0.25 for ComEd residential retail electric customers or $0.35 for Ameren residential retail electric customers, as required by the law. Utilities that fail to comply with these caps are subject to investigation by the ICC as well as remedial action, including modification of contracts executed pursuant to Illinois’ Zero Emission Standard.