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Oxford

New Rate Changes Should Equal Out For Most OED Customers

Oxford Electric customers will notice a $2 increase in their monthly base charge; however, a recent reduction in the energy charge is expected to offset the increase. The change will go into effect Oct. 1

 
In some cases, customers could see a decrease in their bills during severe weather, said OED Superintendent Rob Neely.
 
Photo courtesy of The City of Oxford Electric Department.

In May, the Tennessee Valley Authority approved a Grid Access Charge for their wholesale customers—like OED—which enabled the creation of a fixed portion of the bill that OED receives from TVA. Then TVA reduced the energy charge on the wholesale bill by $0.005/kWh.
 
To offset the loss, OED is implementing a revenue-neutral local rate adjustment that will add $2 to the monthly base charge for each customer. Then they will reduce the energy charge by $.00215 kWh to offset the increase. 
 
“If the price per kWh is currently $0.09513/kWh, it will go down to $0.09298/kWh,” Neely explained. “So the customer that uses a system average amount of energy in a billing period—928 kWh/month for our utility—will see no change in their monthly bill.”
 
During a very hot or cold month, when a customer uses more energy to heat or cool their house, the bill will actually go down because the $/kWh is being reduced.
 
The OED residential customer base charge is currently $13.46 a month. That cost is going up to $15.46 a month. 
 
Compensating On-call Employees
 
Another change beginning Oct. 1 will only affect on-call employees. Some OED employees are required to be on call after normal working hours for weekends and holidays, Neely said. 
 
The plan, approved by the Oxford Board of Aldermen Tuesday, will pay each employee $100 a week for the week they are on-call, outside of their normal working hours.
 
“We have two employees on-call each week and they rotate every five weeks,” Neely said. They are required to change their lifestyle in order to stay at home by the phone and respond to an outage within 15 minutes. While they are on-call for that week, they can’t leave town, can’t consume alcohol, can’t go to a game or sporting event, can’t go fishing, et cetera.”
 
Previously, on-call employees were paid per call.
 
The total cost of the change in pay is $10,400 per year and has been included in the fiscal year 2018-2019 OED budget that was also approved Tuesday.

By hottytoddy.com contributor Alyssa Schnugg

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