Field, who did not run for reelection and will be replaced by Scott Angelle next year, as his final vote in a 16-year career joined Commissioners Foster Campbell and Lambert Boissiere in puckering up through hiking the rates of anybody who buys electric power outside of Orleans Parish except for the largest manufacturers, even those of the most impoverished households. Commissioners Clyde Holloway and Eric Skrmetta opposed, and even tried at a previous session to get residential households exempted from the final regulation, but were thwarted by the other three.
The increase goes to subsidizing firms that sell equipment designed to increase energy efficiency, through a tax rebate to ratepayers who contract for those services. Eventually, a mechanism would be created to allow power sellers to recoup lost revenues from the hike, estimated to be in the range of 50 cents a monthly bill for the typical household. Only a vague outline of this program named “Quick Start” has surfaced and was approved last PSC meeting, despite it having been introduced more than three years ago, and it may be another two years before the specific details are worked out. At this time, it is estimated to cost ratepayers $25-30 million annually.