Upgrading the electric grid to facilitate true, two-way digital communication requires investment in new technologies and infrastructure. In its May 2008 filing with the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC), subject to review and approval by the PUC, CenterPoint Energy is seeking to recover the cost of this initial deployment of the Advanced Metering System in two separate monthly charges.
Under the proposed plan, all retail electric providers/competitive retailers would be billed a monthly infrastructure charge for eight years based on usage. The infrastructure charge would be about $1.75 per month for each retail electric provider customer, based on usage of 1,000 Kwh. A second charge of about $4.75 per month would be billed to retail electric providers for each interactive meter the company installs for that retail electric provider's customers. This charge would continue for five years after the meter is installed.
The company plans to begin implementation of the deployment plan upon completion of the PUC review and issuance of a PUC order approving the plan. PUC review could take up to 150 days.
With this investment for the future, CenterPoint Energy can put a world of possibilities in the hands of two million Houston-area consumers.