The company's proposal asks for continued support of its distribution infrastructure investment efforts and the opportunity to create new jobs under a skilled workforce and veteran initiative. It also outlines the expectation for market-based rates to decrease for customers who receive their power generation supply through AEP Ohio during the term of the plan.
The plan, proposed to begin on June 1, 2015 and last through May 31, 2018, was filed early in order to provide customers, auction participants and competitive retail electric service providers with advance knowledge of the company's proposed auction schedule. It is the company's intent that this information will help service providers develop more offers to benefit consumers.
The plan projects an average 9 percent decrease in rates over the three-year term of the plan for customers who receive their generation through AEP Ohio. For customers who shop for their generation supply, AEP Ohio expects rates to remain flat. For the average AEP Ohio residential customer using 1,000 kWh per month, approval of the plan would result in a decrease in a customer's total monthly bill of about $9 or 8 percent starting in June 2015. These estimates are based on current auction trends.
In its request, AEP Ohio is asking the PUCO to continue its Distribution Investment Rider (DIR) to support continued reliability improvements and to approve the development of a Sustained and Skilled Workforce Rider that will allow AEP Ohio to recover the incremental costs associated with the creation of new jobs with a focus on hiring military veterans.
The PUCO is expected to deliver an opinion and order on the company's ESP in the summer of 2014.