Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power customers will continue to have access to energy efficiency and demand-response programs but spending will be reduced while benefits are modified, according to a settlement approved by Public Service Commission of West Virginia on Wednesday, Oct. 9.
The settlement reduced the programs to $3.225 million annually, from the proposed $9.1 million. The programs retained in the settlement relate to low-income families hit hardest by recent rate increases.
“We’re encouraged by the settlement since the programs weren’t cut completely,” said Emmett Pepper, executive director of Energy Efficient West Virginia, one of the parties in the PSC case. “The spending reduction, however, is disappointing since fully funded EE programs give consumers – especially families and small businesses on tight budgets – more control over energy bills, create jobs that spur economic growth, and improve the health of both people and buildings.”