PSC Rules Pepco Must Reimburse Ratepayers $800,000
Washington, DC --DC People’s Counsel Sandra Mattavous-Frye announces a major victory the Office of the People’s Counsel (OPC) has won for Pepco ratepayers seeking the benefits and cost-savings of community solar installations. The Public Service Commission (PSC) on Monday ruled in favor of a complaint filed by OPC and the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) involving Community Renewable Energy Facilities (CREFs) that will force Pepco to reimburse consumers more than $800,000.
Through the CREF program, residents and businesses are able to subscribe to receive shares of electricity generated by a solar facility not on their property and earn credits that reduce their electric bills.
In March of 2022, OPC and OAG jointly filed a complaint requesting that the Commission investigate Pepco’s repeated failure to comply with District law governing CREFs. Among the issues raised, OPC contended that Pepco had unlawfully installed meters at CREFs in violation of regulations stating that CREF operators should install the meters, not Pepco. Nonetheless, Pepco ratepayers absorbed the $800,000 cost of the utility’s installations. OPC argued consumers should not be responsible for Pepco’s error and the company should reimburse ratepayers. The Commission agreed with OPC and OAG and ruled Pepco owes its ratepayers a payback.
“OPC is in the forefront of efforts to ensure all consumers across all wards have opportunities to benefit from renewable energy programs. This includes community solar, under which the benefits of a solar project flow to multiple households and businesses, even though solar panels are off-site,” said People’s Counsel Mattavous-Frye. “CREFs play an important role in the District’s efforts to meet its ambitious clean energy and climate goals and OPC is committed to ensuring they are achieved in the most equitable and cost-effective manner.”
The PSC will determine how consumers will be reimbursed after Pepco submits a report that includes the total costs resulting from meters it installed on CREFs from 2015 to present. The report is due within 30 days of the date of the Commission’s June 26 decision.