CA ruling to increase electricity charges

By Alena Mae S. Flores – December 07, 2017 at 09:00 pm

The Energy Regulatory Commission said Thursday it will ask the Court of Appeals to reconsider its order reinstating the higher charges at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market, the trading platform for power suppliers.

“The ERC received the decision of the Court of Appeals and has until Dec. 12 to file a motion for reconsideration,” ERC spokesman Floresinda Digal said.

The ERC earlier voided the high prices at WESM for the electricity sold during the supply months of November to December 2013.  The CA, in a decision on Nov. 7, 2017, effectively overturned the ERC order and reinstated and declared valid the prices of the November and December 2013 supply months.

Digal said the ERC was finalizing a motion, because the CA decision could “result in an increase in the generation charge.”

The CA decision reinstated the higher charges at the WESM which was due to the Malampaya shutdown compounded by the shutdown of other power plants.

“The ERC’s unilateral decision voiding the WESM prices and imposing regulated prices in its stead and patently without basis and defies due process in all forms,” the decision said.

The ERC order was based on the ground that the prices were exceptionally high.

CA 15th Division associate justice Soccoro Inting ruled that the ERC issued the orders without due process.

The appellate court said ERC committed errors of fact and law in the exercise of its quasi-judicial functions, which warranted the reversal of the orders.