SAC files supplemental motion for reversal of ERC ruling

THE Social Action Center (SAC) of the Diocese of Bacolod City filed a supplemental motion for reconsideration on the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) ruling related to the supplemental agreement between Kepco-SPC Power Corporation (KSPC) and Central Negros Electric Cooperative Inc. (Ceneco).

SAC legal counsel Vicente Petierre III said Tuesday, November 14, they filed the supplemental motion on November 7, praying for the reversal of the assailed decision.

On October 4, the SAC filed an appeal after the ERC approved the application for the approval and confirmation of the load factor-based pricing scheme on a monthly reconciliation of the unaccepted contract quantity of the agreement with motion for the issuance of provisional authority.

The ERC order dated June 27, 2017 was signed by its chairman and chief executive officer Jose Vicente Salazar, and commissioners Alfredo Non, Gloria Yap Taruc, Josefina Patricia Magpale-Asirit, and Geronimo Sta. Ana.

The order stated that Ceneco is directed to pay KSPC for the recovery of the unpaid unaccepted contract quantity from July 26, 2011 to November 25, 2013 in the total amount of P232,010,090.

Ceneco is authorized to recover from its consumers the amount of P232 million at a monthly rate of P0.0817 per kWh for a period of 50 months or until such time that the full amount have been recovered, the order further stated.

Petierre said they are praying for the reversal of the assailed decision because the P232 million will be passed on to the member-consumers and this amount only covers the period of July 26, 2011 to November 25, 2013 or two years and four months to be exact.

“We wish to bring to the attention of the Honorable Commission that the contract entered into between Ceneco and Kepco is for 10 years which will end on May 31, 2021. And there is no assurance that for seven years and eight months, there will be no more application to be filed relative thereto," he said.

Petierre added that with the apparent financial burden to the member-consumers, they cannot find wisdom in the assailed decision when it was clearly admitted by applicant Kepco in its compliance that it did not generate the un-nominated capacity.

He also noted that the intervenor SAC and the member-consumers have the right to strongly disagree on the ERC decision because the contract was signed on July 29, 2011 by the respective applicants, yet the decision June 27, 2017 direct the deduction from the member-consumers starting July 26, 2011.

“The contract allegedly took effect on July 29, 2011 and notarized on August 5, 2011, but the assailed decision says the payment should start from July 26, 2011. It means, the assailed decision has retroactive effect to the consumers. The member-consumers were made to be paid of something not yet delivered, but also not yet approved by the Honorable Commission,” Petierre said.

In an event that they cannot get positive response from the ERC, Petierre said he will recommend to the SAC to have this case brought to the Court of Appeals.

Majority of the members of the Ceneco Board had earlier approved a resolution to seek clarification with ERC on the effectivity of the implementation of the ERC decision on the KSPC-Ceneco 24-megawatt load factor scheme in the light of the aforesaid motion for reconsideration filed by the intervenors.

Directors Dwight Carbon, Noel Alarcon, Joselito Gaston, and Jojit Yap voted to put on hold the collection of P232 million worth of additional charges pending the clarification from the ERC while former Director Arnel Lapore voted in the negative. Director Robert Javellana abstained while Director Joyce Cuenca failed to participate the voting.

The Ceneco Board of Directors and the case intervenors had earlier urged Congress to hold a committee hearing in Bacolod City on the order of ERC for KSPC and Ceneco to collect P232 million worth of additional charges from member-consumers.

Petierre also supported the call to hold the committee hearing in Bacolod so that the member-consumers can attend the hearing.
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