(The Washington Post) “. . . the bill still calls for a rate review every three years and seems to protect Dominion from having to return future excess earnings to consumers.”

An ambitious effort to redraw the way Virginia oversees its biggest utility took a small step forward Tuesday, and Gov. Ralph Northam (D) has taken a direct hand in brokering a deal to restore the state’s ability to regulate consumers’ electricity bills.

Undoing the controversial rate freeze that Dominion Energy has enjoyed since 2015 has become a primary focus of this year’s General Assembly session. A bipartisan group of legislators rolled out sweeping bills last week to return some excess earnings to ratepayers, but the package drew criticism for locking in even more protections for both Dominion and the far smaller Appalachian Power, which delivers electricity to the southwest corner of the state.

The State Corporation Commission, which saw its authority over the utilities curbed by the General Assembly’s 2015 rate freeze, told lawmakers in a letter this week that the legislation would shortchange ratepayers.

Click to continue. By Gregory S. Schneider – Jan 30, 2018.

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