Requested increase to base rates is first in eight years
Dominion Energy South Carolina filed with the Public Service Commission of South Carolina an application requesting an overall 7.75% increase to its retail electric rates. This requested adjustment equates to an increase of less than 1% per year for the typical customer since base rates were last adjusted in 2012.
“Our customers count on us to keep the electricity flowing safely, reliably and efficiently,” said Rodney Blevins, president of Dominion Energy South Carolina. “It is an obligation we take seriously every day. An adjustment to rates is critical to our company’s ability to continue to meet this obligation and expectation.”
If approved, the bill of a typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month would be about $131.99 per month. This would be an increase of $9.68 per month, on average. It is expected that the commission will conduct a public hearing on the request in January 2021. If approved, new rates would be effective in March 2021.
The company’s need to increase rates at this time reflects the continued investment in assets and operating resources required to serve an expanding customer base; maintain the safety, reliability and efficiency of its system; and meet increasingly stringent reliability, security and environmental requirements.
Dominion Energy South Carolina has invested approximately $3.2 billion since its last rate case in the system necessary to provide safe, reliable and economical delivery of electric service to its customers, including more than 80,000 new customers. This includes:
- more than $2.1 billion in expansions and improvement to its electric transmission and distribution system
- approximately $878 million in upgrades and environmental controls for its electric generation stations
- about $198 million in technology and equipment to better serve its customers and enhance system security
Additionally, the requested increase includes expenses from prior years that were deferred for consideration until this proceeding, including storm response and restoration expenses. The savings realized as a result of the merger in January 2019 have reduced annual operating costs by more than $45 million. This amount is reflected in the proposed rate adjustment, reducing the amount of the requested increase.
“This rate request is the first increase sought for retail base electric rates in more than eight years, and it reflects the work we have done to operate even more efficiently and cost-effectively than ever before,” Blevins said.
About Dominion Energy
More than 7 million customers in 20 states energize their homes and businesses with electricity or natural gas from Dominion Energy (NYSE: D), headquartered in Richmond, Va. The company is committed to sustainable, reliable, affordable and safe energy and is one of the nation’s largest producers and transporters of energy with more than $100 billion of assets providing electric generation, transmission and distribution, as well as natural gas storage, transmission, distribution and import/export services. The company is committed to achieving net zero carbon dioxide and methane emissions from its power generation and gas infrastructure operations by 2050.