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Oxford Electric Department to lower residential rates

Oxford residents could soon be seeing lower costs for electricity, thanks to a vote by the board of aldermen to implement a revenue-neutral local rate adjustment for Oxford Electric Department.

Due to a change in the way the Tennessee Valley Authority is billing OED for wholesale power and the addition of a “grid access” charge, the department saw a chance to reduce its energy charge for customers, Rob Neely, superintendent of OED, said.

“After this year’s hot summer and extremely cold period during January, it makes sense to reduce the energy charge and decrease the volatility of the customer’s bill,” Neely said.  “Basically, the costs to maintain and provide the distribution infrastructure are going up and the cost of energy is going down.”

For example, the OED residential customer charge is currently $13.46 per month and covers the cost of providing and maintaining distribution infrastructure to serve that customer. With the new rate adjustment, the customer charge is going up to $15.46 per month. To offset that increase, the energy rate that the customer pays per kilowatt hour is going down $0.00215, according to Neely.

During a very hot or cold month, when a customer uses more energy to heat or cool their house, Neely said the bill will actually go down compared to the current rates because the dollars per kilowatt hour will be reduced.

The rate adjustment will officially go into effect on October 1, 2018.