Colorado Regulator to Conduct Survey of Electric Utility Retail Rates

The Colorado Public Utilities Commission established a proceeding to examine retail rates of electric utilities in the state, according to a June 17 press release. The proceeding will specifically focus on recommendations intended to provide rate relief for utility territories whose rates are materially higher than the state’s average.

The commission will conduct a survey of regulated electric utilities to gather input on basic cost, rate structure, usage, demographic statistics, as well as factors that could provide correlation with rates. Survey results will be used to determine the average state retail rate, propose a definition for “materially greater,” and provide rate relief options. Commission staff will also gather stakeholder input on survey data.

Although rural electric cooperatives are exempt from the survey, the commission will solicit voluntary survey responses from cooperatives and municipal utilities, so as to have a comprehensive idea of the state of electric retail rates.

The move stems from a 2019 law that directed the commission to open such a proceeding. A report to the legislature is due by Feb. 1, 2021.