Bacolod Lone Opposition Councilor Wilson Gamboa, Jr., amidst innumerable complaints about rising rates reflected in the monthly billings, urged the management of Central Negros Electric Cooperative, Inc. (CENECO) last May 4, 2022, to explain the generation system charges now burdening consumers-members-owners majority of them could hardly make both ends meet caused by the pandemic.
Gamboa earlier explained that the electricity price surge is the effect of the illegally extended 44-megawat at P5.29/kWh CENECO contract with KEPCO SPC Power Corporation (KSPC) but was disengaged effective April 26, 2022.
KSPC disengaged or “pulled out” its contract because of CENECO’s failure to pay the price differential between the Power Supply Agreement (PSA) extension for one year and the Time of Use (TOU) price prescribed by the National Power Corporation (NPC) unbundled rates.
The disengagement of KSPC from the said PSA will give way to the procurement of power from the open market Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM), the price of which range from P7.00/kWh to P26.00/Kwh not withstanding the “commission” of the market operator; settlement of the WESM is every 25th of every month and CENECO Management should have enough ready cash-fund for the electricity transfer – thus the price surge.
Meanwhile, the Gamboa resolution cited Section 23 of Republic Act 9136, otherwise known as the Electric Power Industry Reform Act of 2001 (EPIRA), and Section 4 (h), Rule 7 of the Implementing Rules and Regulation (IRR) of the EPIRA provide that a Distribution Utility (DU) shall supply the electricity in the least cost manner to its captive market within its franchise area, subject to collection of retail rates duly approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC).
Gamboa deplored that this EPIRA provision was never even integrated into the CENECO pricing scheme and as a consequence, the generation system charge from January 2022 compared to April 2022 had increased to almost double from 4.0891/kWh to 7.346/kWh for residential consumers-members-owners.
The assuage the public clamor, Gamboa filed a unanimously approved resolution “urging CENECO management to submit the computation table for the electric generation charges and power systems losses for the months of January to April 2022 and explain the increases in generation system charges.”
He said, “CENECO is required by law to inform or publish on a regular monthly basis, especially in its official website the Computation Table for us to know where it gets its power supply.”
“Knowledge of CENECO computations will somehow assuage the afflictions suffered by consumers-members-owners at this time of the pandemic and I will continue to push for the refund of this overpriced CENECO miscalculation,” Gamboa also said earlier