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Dominion Virginia Files for Lower Fuel Charges

May 10, 2016 By Cheryl Kaften

Dominion Virginia Power customers can expect to see lower electricity bills starting July 1, if a fuel rate proposal the company made on May 4 (Docket No. PUE-2016-00046) is approved by the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC).

The company has proposed a reduction in its fuel charge that would lower the monthly bill of a typical residential customer, who uses about 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) a month, by $4.35, or about 3.8 percent.

With the adjustment, the utility claims that the typical residential bill would have increased by just under 4 percent since July 2008 – less than half the rate of inflation over the same eight-year period.

“At Dominion our goal is to operate at high levels of efficiency in order to keep bills low for our customers. We have done this, and the efficiency from our generating units, combined with the low cost of natural gas and the generally milder weather, has led to this positive announcement,” said Dominion Virginia President Robert Blue.

The fuel charge comprises about 20 percent of a typical residential bill. The company is not allowed to make any profit on the fuel charge, so customers only pay for the actual cost of power station fuels such as natural gas, coal, uranium and oil.

In a separate rate filing, the company proposed a small adjustment in the charge for the company’s new and upgraded transmission infrastructure. The proposed change would raise a typical residential customer’s bill by30 cents, or about 0.3 percent, and take effect September 1, if approved.

Base rates, which comprise about 60 percent of a typical residential bill, remain frozen. With the proposed fuel and transmission rate changes, the company’s electric rates continue to be well below national, state and regional averages.

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