HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) — As that winter storm moved in on Texas last week, the cost of our electricity surged. The cost of electricity shot up from about $.09 per kilowatt hour to $9.00 per kilowatt hour.
Jesson Bradshaw with Energy Ogre says customers who use real-time market plans, getting their electricity at wholesale prices from companies like Griddy, will likely see that surge pricing with bills in the thousands.
“The price that’s being charged is $9 per kilowatt hour. so we’re going to rack up one of these large bills, very, very quickly for that very, very, very small sub-segment of the market place that was purchasing service that way,” said Bradshaw.
We sat down with Bradshaw to address viewer questions.
Question: Will my bill be higher if I’m on a fixed rate plan?
“Their rate is not going to change like that. they don’t have that $9 a kilowatt hour kind of exposure,” said Bradshaw.
Question: Will I have to pay my bill in full?
“It’s definitely an obligation someone can come after them for,” explained Bradshaw.
Question: What should be my next step?
For wholesale customers, he recommends contacting the provider to try and negotiate the bill, then set up a payment plan.
“Every provider in the state, by statute, has the obligation to offer some sort of payment plan to customers,” said Bradshaw.
Customers do have some time to plan their finances. The Public Utility Commission met in an emergency meeting Sunday granting a moratorium on disconnections for customers who do not pay their bills.
“The disconnect moratorium is a feature that works. It works for everybody,” said Bradshaw.
In the meantime Gov. Greg Abbott says he is working to find a solution to this issue, as several customers take to GoFundMe seeking personal financial relief.