PHOENIX - On October 21st, Arizona Corporation Commission (“Commission”) Chairwoman Lea Márquez Peterson filed an amendment in the pending rate case for Arizona Public Service Company (APS) which proposes the company reduce costs and achieve average retail rates of $0.09/kWh by 2030 via a plan that would span multiple years and multiple rate cases. APS’s current average retail rate is $0.1172/kWh.
In its application for a rate case, APS asked for a 5 percent rate increase. Based on votes taken at the Commission’s last public meeting on October 6, 2021, the rate case would result in a $172 million dollar decrease to the company’s annual revenue.
With the rate case open, Chairwoman Márquez Peterson believes there is still an opportunity to achieve meaningful rate relief for customers, without degrading the state’s regulatory compact or the utility's financial health and ability to provide safe and reliable service in our state.
The company’s last rate decrease was in 1996, which was a part of a comprehensive, multi-year, multi-rate case plan beginning in 1991 to rein in the company’s operating expenses and achieve operational excellence in the midst of impending retail electric competition in Arizona.
With APS already stating they plan to file their next rate case as soon as summer of 2022, Chairwoman Márquez Peterson believes the most constructive approach to addressing the company’s past issues is to work collaboratively to ensure the company is focusing on the essential services.
“Under Arizona’s constitution, the Commission serves as the substitute for market competition,” said Chairwoman Márquez Peterson. “When we’re dealing with captive customers and monopoly utilities, effective rate regulation is the solution.”
A link to Chairwoman Márquez Peterson’s proposed amendment can be found here.