SC Edison Apparently Tells Customers Wrong And Costly Info About Rates

Written by on October 13, 2021

And it appears that Edison has sent out wrong information … about your power bills.  And if you follow the advice on the mailer … it could lead to a substantial increase in your electric bills.

Southern California Edison has sent out mailers to some customers who have switched over to a “Time Of Use” (TOU) rate plan, which lowers electric rates across the board, except for the peak evening hours of 4-9 p.m.  Switching to that plan saves consumers money if they can run major appliances outside peak hours, and it saves SCE money by lowering peak demands.

But the original 2018 TOU rates expire in December, and SCE is telling all of its ratepayers that they need to go to the SCE web page to pick a new TOU rate plan.  The letter says customers now on an Edison TOU plan will see their power bills go up about by 9 to 19 percent.

One problem.

About 97 percent of Malibu electric customers do not buy electricity from SCE.  The city has switched them by default to a new cooperative, the Clean Power Alliance (CPA).  And the CPA is not raising its rates similar to SCE, contrary to what SCE says in its letter.

SCE delivers the power and sends out the bills, but the electricity is generated and charged by CPA. And the Edison TOU rate plan change does not affect CPA customers.

If a CPA customer follows the directive in the SCE letter, they will go to the SCE web site and choose an SCE TOU plan that would see their rates go up, by about 9 to 19 percent in at least one resident’s case.

The Clean Power Alliance is a competing firm … set up by cities across the Southland … to beat Southern California Edison at their own game.

A CPA spokesman says most CPA residential customers in Malibu will be transitioned to a TOU rate plan in March of next year.  And the new CPA TOU rates are still being worked out. 

But someone who makes the change now, to SCE TOU rates, will find an expensive shock in their bill.

The CPA spokesman says electric customers currently on a flat rate … who transition to TOU charges …  will get a 12-month risk free trial. This means customers can try it for one year so they can see what the difference will be for them by switching to CPA TOU rates.

The time of day rates can save customers money … if they switch their timers for swimming pools … and don’t use heavy electric devices like washing machines or clothes driers … during evening hours.

Bottom line … if you got a bill change warning from Edison in the mail … ignore it … unless you are one of the very small number of people who have switched back to Edison … for power.

CPA officials agree that the SCE mailer is inaccurate … and could cause customers to inadvertently switch from CPA power to SCE power … increasing their bills about 9 to 19 percent over CPA rates at least for this winter. 

The SCE vice president who signed the erroneous or deceptive rate letter no longer works for the company, according to her auto reply email. We have a call in to SCE public relations … we will bring you their response. 

All of this is regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission … we have a call in to them as well. 

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