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Citizens for Keeping the All Electric Promise
Status of All Electric Discount Credits
September 2013 begins the third year of the eight year phase out plan for a portion of the all electric discount credit.  Beginning in September and running through May of each upcoming year, customers will continue to receive the full value of two of the credits which are not currently scheduled to change. These two credits are the Residential Distribution Credit and the Residential Non-Standard Credit.  Beginning in November 2013 and running through March 2014, customers will receive 5/6 of the Residential Generation Credit received during Winter 2012/2013.  Going forward for the next 5 years, this credit will continue to be reduced by 1/6 until it is completely phased out.  See Status of AE Credits for complete details.

Electric Choice Background

 
Electric Choice (aka deregulation) has been around since 2000 in Ohio, but for customers of FirstEnergy's local Illuminating Company, Ohio Edison, and Toledo Edison, there wasn't much of a competitive market until 2011.  With Electric Choice, electricity can be purchased directly from your local electric company, or you can purchase it from a certified electric supplier.  This gives you the freedom to potentially pay less for the same electricity used now, while remaining a customer of your local electric company.  Your local electric company will continue to be responsible for maintaining all poles, wires, and quality of service to your home. 
 
When you look at your electric bill, about half of the total bill amount is distribution (getting the electricity to you) and the other half is generation (or the actual cost of the electricity).  The charges related to distribution are set by the PUCO, non shoppable,  and will continue to be paid to your local electric company.  The part of your bill that is deregulated and you can competitively shop for is the generation cost, or actual cost of electricity.  When you shop for electricity, you remain a customer of your local electric company while also being a customer of a certified electric supplier.  Most suppliers even offer combined billing, meaning you will continue to receive just one bill from your local electric company containing the total charges from both companies.
 
How to Shop for Electricity 

Step # 1 Figure out what you are currently paying for electricity

Find the section of your bill called "Charges From The Illuminating Company"  or "Charges From Ohio Edison"  or  "Charges From Toledo Edison" (your local electric company).

Look for a line item called "Bypassable Generation and Transmission Related Component" which is your total cost of electricity IF you are buying it directly from your local electric company.  If you see this line item, then the price you are paying for each kWh of electricity is the current PRICE TO COMPARE printed on your bill.  You can find the current PRICE TO COMPARE  listed in the section of your bill called "Messages" next to the bolded words "Residential Service - "                                                                                                                                             

If you do not see the line item called "Bypassable Generation and Transmission Related Component," this means you are already buying your electricity from another electric supplier.  To find out how much you are paying that supplier, look for a section of your bill called "Charges From ABC Company" where ABC Company represents your current electric supplier such as "FirstEnergy Solutions", "Duke Energy Retail Sales", etc.  In this section, look for the words "Basic Charge" and your price per kWh is listed on this line.   

If you do not remember switching to another electric supplier, but you see another supplier listed (such as FirstEnergy Solutions), it is likely that your city or county automatically enrolled you into an electric aggregation program.  You are allowed to leave your city/county aggregation and switch to an offer from another supplier.  However, you may be subject to a one time early cancellation fee of $25 or $50 payable to your city/county aggregation supplier.  Check the PUCO Website for a complete map of governmental electric aggregations and contact your aggregation supplier about any early cancellation fees. 

Step # 2 Know FirstEnergy's PRICE TO COMPARE
 
Know what FirstEnergy's PRICE TO COMPARE is going to be for the upcoming "electric year" which runs from June 1 to May 31st annually.  The PRICE TO COMPARE is the price you would pay if you are buying directly from your local electric company (either the Illuminating Company, Ohio Edison, or Toledo Edison.)  This price is important as it serves as the "retail" price of electricity upon which other offers are based.  For example,  most electric aggregations usually offer a percent off the PRICE TO COMPARE (Such as 3 or 4 % off).   Knowing not only your current PRICE TO COMPARE but also the upcoming/future price is important in evaluating potential savings from any new offers.
 
FirstEnergy's PRICE TO COMPARE
Season 
Illuminating Company 
Ohio Edison 
Toledo Edison 
Summer PRICE TO COMPARE (Jun to Aug)  7.28 7.22 7.27
Winter PRICE TO COMPARE (Sep to May) 
6.37
6.31 6.36
                    **These prices are in effect June 1, 2013 through May 31, 2014 but can vary slightly
                         (a few tenths of a cent) on a quarterly basis due to rider changes.  Prices last
                         updated August 29, 2013.  Source of data is FirstEnergy's current tariff sheets.
 
Step # 3 Compare what you're currently paying to a new offer
Compare what you are  paying now (from STEP # 1) to one of the currently available offers on the PUCO's Apples to Apples Electric Supplier Comparison Chart    Most offers are usually a fixed price per kWh or a percent off the PRICE TO COMPARE.  Remember that all offers are contracts of usually 1 or 2 years and do come with noted early termination fees.  Likewise, if you are currently with another supplier, you will need to contact that supplier to see if any early termination fee exists for you to break your current contract.  It is also important to understand that most suppliers do not offer full budget billing  Visit the PUCO Website for more helpful tips on choosing an electric supplier.
 
 
 
Step # 4 Compute your estimated annual savings
Figure the difference in price per kWh between what you are paying now (STEP # 1) and what you could be paying with a new offer.  For example, if you are currently paying 6.0 cents and an offer is available for 5.5 cents per kWh, your savings per kWh is .5 cents (or 1/2 cent per kWh).  Multiply your savings per kWh times your Total Last 12 Months Use (KWH) from your bill to project your estimated annual savings.  For example, if your last 12 months usage is 25,000 and you could potentially save .5 cents per kWh, multiply (25,000 kwh x .005) to equal a $125 annual estimated savings.  
 
As a final check, you should also compare any new offer you are considering to the upcoming/future PRICE TO COMPARE table from STEP # 2 to make sure a new offer is still a wise choice.  Some electric suppliers will compute estimated savings off of last year's PRICE TO COMPARE, but you should always compare it to the upcoming PRICE TO COMPARE which may be higher or lower than last year's pricing. 
 
For a more exact estimated savings, an Electric Savings Calculator Worksheet and enter your actual kWh usage for each month from your last bill and the monthly price per kWh for up to three new offers you are considering. 

Copyright 2013, Sue Steigerwald.  All Rights Reserved. 

All savings are IN ADDITION to the All Electric discount credits currently received from FirstEnergy. This is possible because the Supplier discount is on GENERATION, while the all electric credits you receive to make up the "All Electric" discount are all on the DISTRIBUTION side of your bill which remains with either the Illuminating Company, Ohio Edison, or Toledo Edison. This is why you can receive BOTH the Supplier generation discount AND keep all of your All Electric discount credits.

Still have Questions? Email CKAP Founder, Sue Steigerwald at sue2811@roadrunner.com