Customer Rate Relief Charges To Be Included In Natural Gas Bills Starting October 2023October 04, 2023
- The Customer Rate Relief Charge (CRR Charge) will become part of the gas cost component of natural gas bills for customers of the utilities that participated in the securitization of extraordinarily high gas costs incurred during Winter Storm Uri (Uri) in February 2021.
- Natural gas utilities are authorized by law to pass through the cost of gas, without markup, which customers see as a monthly line item in their bills.
- Normally, gas costs are passed directly through to customers within one to six months. The CRR Charge dramatically reduces the impact of the extraordinarily high gas costs on customers’ bills. The securitization resulted in the issuance of bonds to provide the utilities with money to pay their gas suppliers for the gas purchased during Uri, and the utilities collect the CRR Charge to pay for the cost of the bonds over a long period of time.
- A CRR Charge of $1.10 per Mcf ($0.11 per Ccf) will be included in the gas cost portion of bills starting October 1, 2023.
- Participating Gas Utilities (PGUs) include: Atmos Mid-Tex; Atmos West Texas; CenterPoint Energy; Corix Utilities (Texas) Inc.; EPCOR Gas Texas Inc.; Rockin’ M Gas; SiEnergy, LP; Summit Utilities Arkansas; Texas Gas Service Company, a Division of ONE Gas, Inc. (excluding the West Texas Service Area); and Universal Natural Gas, LLC.
- The securitization was authorized by House Bill 1520, which was passed by the Legislature and signed into law in June 2021. HB 1520 allowed investor-owned natural gas local distribution companies to securitize extraordinarily high gas costs over time to reduce the impact of these costs on customers’ bills.
- The CRR Charge may be adjusted periodically to ensure that sufficient charges are collected to fund the outstanding debt obligations.
- The CRR Charges are expected to continue until April 2039.