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Economic and dam related articles

PenLight Members to Pay
Bonneville Power Rate Surge

by Staff
Kitsap Sun, October 8, 2011

GIG HARBOR -- On Oct. 1 the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) raised its wholesale electric rates by 7.8 percent. A portion of this power price surge will soon be passed on to some 25,000 members of the Peninsula Light Company, who use the BPA as a source to supply 31,000 meters on the Gig/Key Peninsulas.

In a recent statement, PenLight said that this is the second rate increase in the last two years. By law, PenLight is a full requirement utility of BPA.

In response, PenLight will be raising the rates for all classes of service an average of 5.9 percent; residential rates will increase by 4.9 percent.

PenLight's Board has decided to delay the increases until spring of 2012 to offset the impact on the membership, the report said.

For the average PenLight residential member, this increase will mean about $4 per month more on their electric bill.

According to Spence Nordfors, PenLight board president, by delaying the rate increase and offsetting its impact, the decision will lessen the burden on members during the upcoming winter months.

The report said that the utility provides a number of ways to assist its members through payment assistance for residential users as well as conservation programs designed to help conserve electricity for both residents and commercial enterprises.

Also, in the new long-term (18-year contract) relationship with the BPA, PenLight is required to meet the conservation and renewable mandates of Initiative 937 that was passed by voters in 2006.

PenLight CEO Jafar Taghavi said that the board and PenLight management are exploring ways we can help members conserve energy and also keep PenLight fiscally sound.

"Our new relationship with BPA means that tomorrow's way of doing business will not be business as usual.

"I want members to know that PenLight is stringently managing its costs," Taghavi said.

PenLight Members to Pay Bonneville Power Rate Surge
Kitsap Sun, October 8, 2011

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