State utility regulators on Thursday unanimously approved a Pacific Gas & Electric customer rate increase through 2019, which will provide company with an additional $1.5 billion over three years.
PG&E, California's largest utility company, estimates the additional revenue increase will be $88 million this year, an additional $444 million in 2018 and an additional $361 million in 2019.
The approval means that for the rest of 2017, PG&E estimates a typical residential customer's monthly electric bill will increase by 1.1 percent. PG&E estimates that's about a 50 cent increase compared to 2015, for customers who are not part of the company's lower rate program (CARE).
The revenue request is large but the utility company had originally requested $2.3 billion in revenue back in February 2016. It was reduced after a series of public hearings in various service areas.
PG&E submits a funding request, called a General Rate Case, to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) every three years. The company says revenue supports better integrated smart grid technologies, emergency preparations, mobile technology and other infrastructure upgrades.
PG&E released the following statement:
“For the first time ever, PG&E reached a pre-hearing settlement with 14 different parties on its general rate case. The CPUC’s approval of a slightly modified version of this agreement will help us continue to provide safe and reliable energy to our customers in a way that supports California’s ambitious clean energy goals while keeping customer bills as low as possible.”