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Duke Energy Ohio's electric security plan IV

September 5, 2017

Role of the Commission

In formulating its decision in a case, the Commission must balance the interests of many parties and stakeholders while adhering to its mission, “to assure all residential and business consumers access to adequate, safe and reliable utility services at fair prices, while facilitating an environment that provides competitive choices.”

The Commission must balance this responsibility with an obligation to ensure Ohio’s regulated utilities the ability to continue to provide adequate, safe and cost-effective services to Ohio’s consumers and continue to invest in infrastructure improvements and innovative technologies.

In every case that comes before the Commission, a formal record is created. The case record includes written testimony, public testimony and cross-examination of expert witnesses. The Commission cannot make arbitrary decisions; information that is not in the formal record cannot be considered by the Commission in formulating its decision in a case.

Working as the neutral arbiter, it is the Commission’s goal to put Ohio in a position as a leader in developing regulatory certainty, rate stability and modernized grid technologies.

ESP 101

State law requires electric distribution utilities to provide their customers a default generation service. This is called a standard service offer, or SSO. An SSO may be in the form of either an electric security plan (ESP) or market rate offer (MRO). Electric distribution utilities are required to file applications with the PUCO to establish either an ESP or MRO.

ESPs establish the pricing and supply of generation service, and may include distribution system investments, grid modernization, economic development and job retention initiatives and energy efficiency measures. The PUCO is tasked with determining whether an ESP, including its pricing and all other terms and conditions, is more favorable in the aggregate as compared to the expected results that would otherwise apply under an MRO.

Duke Energy Ohio's electric security plan

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) approved Duke Energy Ohio’s first ESP in December 2008, setting gradual increases for the base price of electric generation through December 2011.

In November 2011, the PUCO approved Duke Energy Ohio's second ESP, in effect until May 2015. Under this ESP, Duke's standard service offer (SSO) load was ordered to be provided through competitive auctions.

In April 2015, the PUCO approved Duke Energy Ohio's third ESP, in effect until May 31, 2018. The third ESP again planned for Duke Energy Ohio’s SSO load to be provided through competitive auctions.

In June 2017, Duke Energy Ohio filed its fourth ESP, proposed to take effect between June 2018 and May 2024.

What is Duke Energy Ohio requesting in its ESP filing?

In June 2017, Duke Energy Ohio filed its fourth ESP, proposed to take effect after the May 31, 2018 end date of its current ESP, with PUCO review of the plan in its fourth year.

The proposed ESP would secure all supply needed for its standard service offer (SSO) customers through a competitive bidding process.

In the application, Duke requested the addition of four new riders.

  • The Regulatory Mandates Rider would recover the operations and maintenance expenses resulting from federal, state or Commission mandates that are not otherwise recovered in base rates or other riders.
  • The Incentive Rate making Mechanism Rider would provide a credit or charge to customers based on an earnings band and the company’s actual earnings.
  • The Power Forward Rider would include the costs of PowerForward related initiatives.
  • The Electric Service Reliability Rider would recover incremental vegetation management expenses, including icremental operations and maintenance expenses since Jan. 1, 2017.

In this application Duke has also proposed the modification of several current riders, the elimination of two and the extension of Rider PSR beyond May 31, 2018. For a complete list, see exhibit JEZ-4 in the company's application.

How might my bill be affected?

As of now, the exact bill impacts of Duke Energy Ohio's proposal are unknown. PUCO staff is currently analyzing the proposal and more detailed information will be added to this page as it becomes known. A full list of possible bill impacts can be found on exhibit JEZ-3 of the company's application.

How can I make my voice heard?

Customers may write to the PUCO online or by mail at 180 E. Broad St., Columbus, Ohio 43215. Correspondences should include the case number 17-1263-EL-SSO.

The PUCO will schedule multiple local public hearings for the case. Customers and interested parties are welcomed to attend the hearings and provide testimony and comments to be added to the case record.

Notice of these hearings will be provided on the PUCO website, as well as through state and local news publications.

For more information

To view Duke Energy Ohio's ESP application, visit and click on the link in the Docketing Information System (DIS) and enter case number 17-1263-EL-SSO.