Texas Regulators Vote to Double Electric Prices Cap 10/25/12
October 25, 2012
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas Public Utility Commission has given preliminary approval to double the cap on wholesale electricity prices over the next three years.
The commission says raising prices is necessary to encourage more plant construction and prevent power outages. The maximum wholesale rate would rise from $4,500 to $9,000 in 2015. In Texas's minute-by-minute market, the cap was reached only once this year and prices are normally much lower.
State officials have warned that higher prices are needed to encourage companies to build more power plants as the Texas population grows. Industry experts say companies that operate the state's power plants are losing money because prices are too low most of the year.
Consumer groups complain that wholesale price increases can trickle down to monthly household electric bills for most Texans.