Last week, California utility companies rolled out a new fixed-rate bill proposal. The basics of the proposal are the more you make, the more you pay for the flat rate. Then there will be a reduced usage charges, subsidized for all households by the flat rate.
Here's the breakdown in pricing for San Diegans.
- Household income $28,000 – $69,000 would pay $34 a month.
- Households income from $69,000 – $180,000 would pay $73 a month.
- Household income above $180,000 would pay $128 a month.
All these fees are tacked on before using a single kilowatt hour, meaning median-income San Diegans will pay $876 a year in electricity rates, regardless of whether they use any electricity. Also, you San Diegans will still get charged these monthly rates if they have residential solar.
This is a ridiculous effort to try and charge San Diegans even more for basic necessities. This proposal will negatively impact everyone, and the many San Diegans who have put their life savings into solar will see minimal benefits. This bait-and-switch is a significant setback for those who have invested dollars to reduce their carbon footprint and help the environment. The proposal also doesn't consider the fact that some households consume more electricity than others.
This comes as State and Federal politicians continue to push green energy projects that can't meet basic demand.
Last August, the Air Resources Board passed a regulation that all cars must be zero-emissions by 2035… and just six days later, California's power grid was so taxed by heat waves that an unprecedented, 10-day emergency alert warned residents to cut electricity use or face outages. We are looking at another summer of blackouts while residents pay exorbitant amounts for electricity that won't even be on.
The new fixed-rate bill proposal is a poorly thought-out scheme that will harm the majority of San Diegans. It fails to address the root cause of rising electricity bills and unfairly burdens San Diegans in light of inflation and high costs of living. The State legislature and California power companies should return to the drawing board and develop a more equitable solution that considers all households' needs.
If you would like to contact the California Public Utilities Commission, you can do so the following ways:
The public can submit comments online via the proceeding’s docket card. See link here: apps.cpuc.ca.gov/c/R2207005
If someone wants to submit oral comments, they can call the Public Advisor’s Office at: 1-866-849-8390
This fixed charge proposal is part of the Demand Flexibility Rulemaking (ca.gov). This is in the very early stages and the proposal by the utilities will receive lots of feedback from the public and parties to the proceeding. The Proceeding Number is: R2207005.