Texas TDU Would Pay $250,000 Under Settlement With PUC Staff Concerning Alleged Failure To Honor Customer REP Switch Requests During A Mass Transition
November 14, 2019 Email This Story Copyright 2010-19 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
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CenterPoint Energy Houston Electric, LLC (CenterPoint Houston) would pay $250,000 under a settlement with
Staff of the Public Utility Commission of Texas to resolve alleged violations of Electric Reliability Council of
Texas Retail Market Guide § 7.11(1) regarding the June 1, 2018 mass transition involving Breeze
The settlement states, 'Under ERCOT Retail Market Guide § 7.11(1) in effect at the time of the alleged violation,
all market participants and ERCOT are required to work to honor the customer's choice to
switch to its chosen retail electric provider during a mass transition.'
The settlement states, 'Under 16 TAC § 25.43(p)(13), during a mass transition, an electric utility must not override
or supersede a switch request made by a customer to switch to a new REP of choice, if the
request was made before a mass transition is initiated.'
The settlement states, 'Breeze Energy was previously certificated as a retail electric provider (REP) that operated
in CenterPoint Houston's certificated service area under REP certificate number 10211.
On February 22, 2019, Breeze Energy relinquished its certificate.'
The settlement states, 'On May 29, 2018, Breeze Energy defaulted with ERCOT when it failed to make an ERCOT
collateral call, forcing its customers to select another REP or be transferred to a Provider
of Last Resort (POLR) as a part of a mass transition.'
The settlement states, 'On May 29, 2018, ERCOT provided notification to affected market participants of a mass
transition involving Breeze Energy. CenterPoint Houston was among the market
participants that received this notification.'
The settlement states, 'On May 30, 2018, CenterPoint Houston received from ERCOT the 814_03 Enrollment
Notification Request transactions for the Breeze Energy mass transition. The stated mass transition date was June 1, 2018.'
The settlement states, 'On June 1, 2018, CenterPoint Houston completed its meter reads for affected ESI IDs and
completed the mass transition by approximately 9:00 a.m. CenterPoint Houston processed
approximately 7,728 transactions related to the Breeze Energy mass transition.'
The settlement states, 'At the time of to the Breeze Energy mass transition, CenterPoint Houston's system was
programmed to reject customer-initiated switch requests received after CenterPoint
Houston received an 814_03 Enrollment Notification Request from ERCOT for a mass
transition. As a result, CenterPoint Houston rejected 701 customer-initiated switch
requests to switch to a REP of their choice because such switch requests were received
after the May 30, 2019 814_03 Enrollment Notification Request from ERCOT for the
Breeze Energy mass transition.'
The settlement states, 'Of the 701 customer-initiated switch requests that were rejected, the affected ESI IDs were
on a POLR rate between 1 to 7 days, with the average amount of time being approximately
2.5 days. Additionally, the affected ESI IDs cumulatively consumed approximately
176,325 kilowatt hours while being on POLR rate, with the average consumption being
approximately 250 kilowatt hours. CenterPoint Houston estimates an approximate
aggregate cost of $17,000 over what these customers would have otherwise paid.'
The settlement states, 'CenterPoint Houston failed to honor customer-initiated switch requests made between May
30, 2019 and June 1, 2018, the date of Breeze Energy's mass transition.'
The settlement states, 'Commission Staff asserts that CenterPoint Houston was required to honor these switch
requests under 16 TAC § 25.43(p)(13) and ERCOT Retail Market Guide § 7.11(1) in effect
at the time.'
The settlement states, 'CenterPoint Houston asserts that it was compliant with the Commission's rules, the
ERCOT Nodal Protocols, and the ERCOT Retail Market Guide in effect at the time
regarding customer-initiated switch requests.'
The settlement states, 'Following the Breeze Energy mass transition, CenterPoint Houston re-programmed and
tested its system to ensure that during a mass transition, customer-initiated switch requests
are processed up to 7:00 p.m. of the stated mass transition date. CenterPoint Houston
asserts that the re-programmed system would have honored, up to 7:00 p.m., the 701
customer-initiated switch requests that were rejected during the Breeze Energy mass
transition. As a further quality control measure, CenterPoint Houston intends to conduct
an internal audit of its post-Breeze Energy mass transition process. CenterPoint Houston
agrees to file the results of this audit in this docket on or before September 30, 2020.'
The settlement states, 'CenterPoint Houston neither admits nor denies a violation of any statute, administrative
rule, ERCOT Nodal Protocol, or ERCOT Retail Market Guide provision.'