California imposes monthly $24 charge on electricity bills

By Debra Kahn | 05/10/2024 06:31 AM EDT

The California Public Utilities Commission’s move is aimed at encouraging customers to embrace electric vehicles and home appliances.

Electric transmission lines are shown in Lansing, Michigan.

The California Public Utilities Commission voted 4-0 to impose a fixed charge on electricity bills. Al Goldis/AP

California regulators voted Thursday to impose a set monthly charge on electricity customers, resolving a hot-button debate that had drawn in lawmakers concerned about high bills as the state transitions to electric cars and appliances.

The California Public Utilities Commission voted 4-0 to put a fee of roughly $24 per month on most customers’ bills in a move intended to try to make bills fairer and boost the state’s clean energy transition. It will not go into effect until next year at the earliest.

The agency said that by reducing per-unit rates, the plan would bring down bills for most Californians, with the exception of low-electricity users on the coast, who would pay a little more. It would save an average customer up to $25 per month on electric vehicle charging and up to $19 per month on electric appliances compared to today’s structure.


CPUC President Alice Reynolds at Thursday’s meeting called it “a very incremental but important step towards this decarbonized future.”