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Bill Payment Options : Definitions of Terms on Your Bill

Customer charge
A charge for electric service that covers a portion of the costs for electric meters, meter reading and billing.

Demand
The rate at which electric energy is delivered to or used by a customer expressed in kilowatts at a given instant or averaged over a designated period of time, usually 15 minutes.

Demand charge
A charge for electric service provided designed to recover the capacity (kW) costs of the wholesale electric supplier .

Demand rate
A method of charging for electricity where the rate of electric usage (kW) during the billing period is considered in determining a portion of the customerís bill.

Distribution demand
Highest demand over the current month or preceding 11 months.

Distribution demand charge
Designed to recover costs of infrastructure needed to deliver electricity from wholesale delivery point to customerís service entrance.

Energy
Generally refers to kilowatt-hours.

Energy charge
The portion of the electric service based on electric energy (kWh) consumed

Flat rate
The price charged per kWh is constant, does not change based on time of day.

Kilowatt
Measure of electric power equal to 1,000 watts. One kilowatt (kW) equals 1.34 horsepower.

Kilowatt-hour
Basic unit for measuring electric energy. Equal to one kilowatt of power supplied or consumed for one hour.

Late payment charge
Charge that covers administrative and carrying costs of late payments.

Off-Peak period
Periods of relatively low system demand.

On-Peak period
Periods of relatively high system demand.

Power Cost Adjustment Clause (PCAC)
Charge per kWh that varies monthly. Designed to make wholesale power costs a pass-through cost to customer. Equivalent to the amount current per-unit cost of wholesale power is greater or less than base per-unit cost of power.

Single-phase service
Service where the facility has two energized wires coming into it. Typically serves 120/240 volt services and requires simpler infrastructure to support. Is less expensive to install and maintain.

Three-phase service
Service where the facility has three energized wires coming into it. Requires more sophisticated equipment and tends to be more expensive to install and maintain.

Time-of-use rate
Prices for electricity that vary depending on what time of day the customer uses electricity. Designed to reflect the different cost the utility incurs to provide electricity during on-peak and off-peak periods.

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