The Main Stream

Jul 11, 2012 8:18 PM

The future of TEP's energy efficient programs still unknown

TUCSON - Dozens of residents and business owners gathered at the Arizona State Building on Wednesday to talk about Tucson Electric and Power's energy efficient programs.

The programs include the BrightSave home energy audit and retrofit program, as well as business and commercial energy solutions programs.

According to TEP, programs such as these have saved a reported $150 million from 2009 until 2011.

"We had tremendous participation, double digit growth month over month," said Susan Buchan, with the Conservation Services Group.

But even with their popularity, the programs have been put on hold.

The reason? The Arizona Corporation Commission hasn't approved TEP's $18 million budget. Instead they called for an evidentiary hearing to collect more information.

It's a move program supporters are unhappy about. "Every delay makes it less and less likely that we'll get back on track for this year," Buchan added.

However, not everyone wants the programs reinstated because bringing them back will increase all TEP customer rates.

According to TEP, residential customers will see an average increase of $1.10 a month, between the months of October until the end of 2013.

One letter the Commission received in opposition reads in part, "this we believe is unfair to the consumer to have to pay for another user to become more efficient, use less electricity, lowering that persons bills."

If you're interested in finding out more information, there will be another hearing will take place at the Arizona State Building this Thursday.

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