From P7K to P25K: Batangas power distributor to look into case of over threefold increase in bill

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 06 2022 10:51 AM

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MANILA — The Batangas Electric Cooperative 1 will check the case of its customer reporting a threefold increase in her electricity bill, an official said Thursday.

Majorie Ordiales, a resident of Nasugbu, Batangas, told ABS-CBN's TeleRadyo that their electricity bill in September rose to P25,000 from just P7,000 the previous month.

Ordiales said an electrician from the power distributor's branch in Nasugbu had inspected their house after reporting the incident but until now the case remained unresolved.

Alvin Velasco, BATELEC 1's general manager, told the same interview that electric meters could be adjusted in case there is a problem in the reading; however, it needs to be brought to their office.

On Ordialies' concern, he said he will look into it, adding that they are ready to listen to their customers' concerns.

"Nai-a-adjust naman po 'yun pag may pagkakamali sa mismong reading, sa pagkakabit ng linya. [Pag] grounded nai-a-adjust naman po iyon," he said.

"Patitingnan ko po. Handa po kaming makinig diyan."

Ordialies isn't alone. 

Other BATELEC 1's consumers have been flagging the supposed high electric charge — and several mayors are now coming up with a consolidated position paper questioning the power rate.

Taal, Batangas Mayor Fulgencio "Pong" Mercado said local chief executives of the province's 1st district, except Calaca, are set to file a petition.

But Velasco explained that BATELEC 1 is powerless when it comes to generation charge, as it depends on the rate of electricity from its sources or "generators." He said one factor is the fuel cost in the world market.

"Kung ano ang singil, 'yun din lang po ang sisingilin sa konsumer... Kami po ay taga-koleksiyon lamang noon," he said.

BATELEC 1 would have wanted the electric cost to be much lower, Velasco added, because this would be more favorable for their operations.

"Bagama't kami ay nagpapaliwanag sa mga tao, sa bandang huli kailangan po talaga ay maramdaman din ng tao na bumaba talaga ang mismong kuryente," he said.

"Kahit anong gawin namin nasa amin lang pong kontrol dahil 'yun po ay bayarin din namin."

Would the electricity rate still increase? 

Velasco said indicators point to a lower power cost because of the discount it receives from sources.

"Di po namin kontrolado 'yung mismong generation rate pero 'yung indikasyon po dahil may discount na babalik, babalik namin sa consumer kung ano man ang ibinibigay sa aming diskuwento," he said.

—TeleRadyo, October 6, 2022