MPSC Directs Electric Utilities to Inform Commission on Their Intention to Participate in the Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund Funding Factor
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MPSC Directs Electric Utilities to Inform Commission on Their Intention to Participate in the Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund Funding Factor

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – June 16, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today directed utilities to file the number of retail billing meters they serve in Michigan by July 1, if they intend to participate in the funding factor surcharge that funds the Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund.

After a comment period on a proposed funding factor, the MPSC by July 31 will determine the funding factor that runs from the September 2015 billing month through the August 2016 billing month.

Under Public Act 95 of 2013, the MPSC may annually approve a low-income energy assistance factor no later than July 31 of each year for the subsequent fiscal year. The funding factor is a non-bypassable surcharge added to each retail billing meter (no more than one per residential meter per residential site, payable monthly by every customer receiving retail distribution service from an electric utility, municipally owned electric utility or cooperative electric utility, regardless of the identity of the customer’s electric generation supplier. The funding factor is the same across all customer classes, appears on a separate line item on each customer’s bill, and will not exceed $1. The funding factor for 2014-2015 is 97 cents.

Utilities that elect not to collect the funding factor by annually filing a notice with the MPSC by July 1, may not shut off service to any residential customer from Nov. 1 to April 15 for nonpayment of a delinquent account.

Funds are granted and expended through the statewide Michigan Energy Assistance Program (MEAP) by providing assistance to eligible low income households with a household income of not more than 150% of the federal poverty guideline.

During the FY2014 grant term, grantees served 87,647 unduplicated, low-income households with energy bills and services to help households move towards self-sufficiency.

The MEAP was funded by $50,000,000 collected through the low-income energy assistance funding factor approved by the MPSC and $40,000,000 in Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds provided by DHS.

According to the 2014 Federal Poverty Guidelines (FPL), a family of four earning $35,775 is living at 150% of the FPL.

For more information about the MPSC, please visit www.michigan.gov/mpsc.

Contact: Judy Palnau, 517-284-8300

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