Texas Retail Provider To Pay $100,000 Under Settlement With PUC

Texas Retail Provider To Pay $100,000 Under Settlement With PUC Staff Concerning Allegedly Excessive Rates

March 20, 2024

Email This Story
Copyright 2010-23 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • ring@energychoicematters.com

The following story is brought free of charge to readers by VertexOne, the exclusive EDI provider of EnergyChoiceMatters.com

Pogo Energy, LLC (Pogo) would pay $100,000 under a settlement with the Staff of the Public Utility Commission of Texas to resolve Pogo's alleged violation of 16 TAC § 25.498, related to pricing of a prepaid product.

Pogo Energy provided the following statement concerning the matter:

"Pogo Energy takes our PUCT compliance measures seriously. We align all processes to be in full compliance with the rules and regulations that are required."

--- Statement from Pogo Energy

Under 16 TAC § 25.498(c)(15), a REP that provides prepaid service to a residential customer must not charge an amount for electric service that is higher than the price charged by the provider of last resort (POLR) in the applicable transmission and distribution utility (TDU) service territory.

The settlement states, "From January 1, 2023, to May 31, 2023, Pogo charged 35,047 customers more for electric service than what would have been charged under the applicable POLR rate each month."

The settlement states, "Pogo issued credits each month as part of its POLR 'true-up' process, resulting in a total of $1,156,992 of bill credits issued to customers over a 5-month period."

The settlement states, "Pogo asserts that its monthly POLR true-up process ensures that a prepay customer would not pay more on a monthly basis than the customer would have been charged under the applicable monthly POLR rate."

Commission Staff alleges that regardless of the true-up progress, Pogo violated 16 TAC § 25.498(c)(15) by charging an energy rate that was higher than the posted POLR EFL energy rate amount for prepaid service than the applicable POLR rate.

16 TAC § 25.498(c)€(15) also states that the price for prepaid service to a residential customer calculated in accordance with 16 TAC § 25.475(g)(2)(A(E) must be equal to or lower than the maximum POLR rate for the residential customer class at the 500 kilowatt-hour (kWh), 1,000 kWh, and 2,000 kWh usage levels as shown on the POLR electricity facts label (EFL) posted on the Commission’s website for the applicable TDU service territory.

The settlement states, "From January 1, 2023, to May 31, 2023, the prices listed on Pogo’s prepaid EFLs for one or more usage levels was higher than the price listed for the same usage level on the corresponding POLR EFL 58 times."

The settlement states, "By listing a price on Pogo’s EFL which was higher than the price listed for the same usage level on the corresponding POLR EFL, Pogo violated 16 TAC § 25.498(c)(15)."

The settlement states that Pogo has ceased the billing practices central to Staff’s alleged violation of 16 TAC § 25.498(c)(15).

The settlement states that Pogo has implemented the following corrective measures to prevent violations of 16 TAC §25.498(c)(15) from occurring, and will maintain such measures going forward:

a. Pogo has ceased billing energy rates that are higher than the POLR energy rate thus eliminating the monthly POLR true-up process.

b. Pogo has taken steps to ensure its EFLs disclose a price equal to or lower that [sic] the maximum POLR rate for the applicable usage levels as shown on the POLR EFL.

Docket 56337

Texas

Texas

Markets

ERCOT Grid and Market Conditions - System-Wide Demand

ERCOT Grid and Market Conditions - System-Wide Demand

ERCOT Grid and Market Conditions - Fuel Mix

ERCOT Grid and Market Conditions - Fuel Mix

Join The Newsletter

Get new insights, articles and updates right in your inbox.

Join The Newsletter

Get new insights, articles and updates right in your inbox.

Join The Newsletter

Get new insights, articles and updates right in your inbox.