comscore HECO seeks 6.9 percent rate increase for Oahu | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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HECO seeks 6.9 percent rate increase for Oahu

  • JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Alan Oshima, president and CEO of Hawaiian Electric Co., during an interview on Nov. 17.

Hawaiian Electric Co. is seeking to raise rates for Oahu customers by 6.9 percent.

The state’s dominant electric utility submitted a filing for the increase today with the state Public Utilities Commission. If approved, it would boost revenue for the company by $106 million and increase customers’ bills by $8.71 a month based on the December bills.

The bill for an Oahu household using 500 kilowatt-hours in December was $132.32.

HECO said the base rate increase would help improve customer service, pay for operating costs and add more renewable energy resources to the electric grid. The utility said it has spent more than $900 million replacing and upgrading equipment on Oahu.

HECO said due to lower fuel prices, if its proposed rate case is approved, the average bill still would be lower than the bills customers saw last year.

The last rate case that HECO filed seeking an increase was in May 2010. HECO asked for a 6.6 percent increase at that time. The total amount requested was $113.5 million, according to HECO. The PUC ended up approving a 3.4 percent increase in September 2012. That resulted in a revenue increase of $58.1 million.

The PUC has to complete its review and issue its decision before nine months from the date that HECO filed this latest application.

HECO’s base rate is only part of the rates customers see on their bills.

The rates customers pay change monthly, as rates include HECO’s base rate as well as surcharges such as the Energy Cost Adjustment, the Purchased Power Adjustment, IRP Cost Recovery, Revenue Balancing Account Adjustment, and the Renewable Energy Infrastructure Program.

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  • Hawaii already has the most ridiculously expensive rates in the nation. I think HECO should give us a break by minimizing their expensive “green energy” efforts. People want lower electricity bills.

    • I would have no problem paying an additional 6.9% if they committed to running the company 100% more efficiently. Of coarse if they did that, not only would they not need the 6.9, but they actually could cut their rates by about 50%.

        • The rate increase will be approved by Iwase and the gang, just not the full amount. That’s how it works now. This is why everyone who did PV, is ahead of the game. The same way everyone who drives EV, doesn’t pay any gas/road taxes, like everyone else. Be akamai, or be lolo. Its up to you to circumvent the government and corporations as we ‘Make America Great Again.’

    • All Heco energy production is based revenue and profits. Don’t be fooled by the “cost” of green energy. The private manufacturers of green energy are making money! Maybe too much since Heco is trying to scuffle solar and has there own money making projects in the works. “Green energy” really means green($$$) energy for Heco.

    • What we fail to recognize is the union member workers that get raises each year. These workers over time garner higher wages that some of you might be shocked should you see it. It would be interesting if SA would publish the typical wage of these union workers. But of course, this is a union state so our politicians are being paid to promote them. Further, these unions with their slick ads have made unions the “good guys”. That while our pockets are being picked and we don’t even know it. And based on the responses regarding exec pay, they have achieved their goal.

  • The true answer is Connie and Alan needs a huge pay raise and bonus. This is predicted as HECO needs to ‘punish’ rate payers for blowing their merger deal with NextEra that would have given Connie a $10M check, she has to make it back somehow from us.

  • This is ridiculous. Most homes that are part of the tech age uses way more than 500kW hours per month, WAY MORE…you think 70″ screen tvs don’t draw energy? And before any comments come in regarding PV, Green energy and all that, it is only those with money that can put up cells, drive electric cars, AND write all of that off on taxes. The majority of families are living paycheck to paycheck in Hawaii. Don’t people realize that when you average ANYTHING in Hawaii you are getting really low incomes coupled with ridiculously high incomes to come up with a nice big average. HECO as the sole energy utility in Hawaii have an obligation to provide energy for everyone and give back reasonable dividends to shareholders. REASONABLE.

  • Wait a minute. They end the net-metering program, essentially driving many solar companies out of business, and then raise their rates. And we, the intelligent voters in Hawaii voted out Sam Slom the one guy who was against the HECO monopoly. You can’t make this stuff up.

    • From what I’ve read, Nextera operates pretty much like Heco where ever they leave their footprints.

      Yeah, why the State Government allows HECO to continue taking advantage of customers and driving solar businesses out is beyond comprehension. Somebody taking bribes to the max.
      Instead of taking paying tax payers under their wing, the State Government and legislatures are taking care of HECO with kick backs.

  • Good thing I getting social security raise next year. Oh, wait…it will be 0.3% and my property tax will be going up 5.9% because of higher evaluation and now they want to raise electric rates 6.9%. So much for my social security raise. Hope they have extra space for me under the Nimitz Highway overpasses.

  • The PUC needs to look at the cost control and overhead to direct ratios of HECO. Its not about just adding revenue with increased rates…HECO should be scrutinized to make sure they are effective and efficient in their operations.

    • bingo. the PUC has learned much over recent years but they are still outclassed by HECO’s crafty veteran management team. perhaps it’s time for some third-party audits to highlight the inefficiencies in HECO’s business. as it stands now the PUC just takes them at their word without any checks and balances.

  • “HECO said the base rate increase would help improve customer service, pay for operating costs and add more renewable energy resources to the electric grid.”

    I don’t see a “base rate” on my bill, only a “minimum bill,” which is $17.00. If the new minimum bill will be $17.00 + $8.71 = $25.71, that’s a 51% increase in the minimum bill.

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