YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. – Blue Ridge Mountain Electric Membership Corporation (BRMEMC) announced the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) wholesale rate increase will appear on customers’ October bills, resulting in a 1.53 percent spike for residential consumers and a 1.64 percent raise for the smallest commercial (GSA1) customers. Demand and energy load characteristics will determine the impact on GSA2 and GSA3 consumers.
The passed-along-to-customers rate increase is the first in five years despite TVA’s implementation of a comparable raise over the four previous years. BRMEMC attests that the corporation is unable to absorb the heightened cost, while TVA states the increase is necessary to reduce incurred long-term debt and improve general financial conditions.
“TVA’s continued annual wholesale power cost increases have created challenges for our Members, as roughly 63% of each BRMEMC Member’s monthly electric bill is used to pay for wholesale power,” BRMEMC General Manager Jeremy Nelms stated, “BRMEMC works hard to keep distribution costs low, ranking in the lowest quartile among all Cooperatives in the U.S., but we also have to purchase all of the power we supply our Members. As our costs increase, we must pass theses costs through to our Members, It’s not something that we like to do…It is something that we must do to remain fiscally stable.”
The fixed cost portion of residential bills will rise from $19.53 to $21.27. GSA1 consumers should expect an increase from $20.86 to $22.39. BRMEMC advised that customer confusion may occur due to TVA’s billing methodology which will reallocate specific charges within BRMEMC rates. TVA rate increases are expected to climb for a minimum of an additional year.
According to BRMEMC, the corporation intends to advocate with TVA to limit further annual rate increases and vigilantly monitor the changes on behalf of its Members.
Questions or concerns should be directed toward BRMEMC at 1-800-292-6456.
Feature Photo: BRMEMC headquarters in Young Harris, GA