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What are those TDU fees I see on my bill?

The TDU (Transmission & Distribution Utility) fees consist of various charges billed by your local Transmission & Distribution Service Provider, or TDSP (e.g., Texas-New Mexico Power, CenterPoint, and Oncor). A list of common TDU fees includes:

  • Advanced Metering Charge: A fee charged to offset a TDU's fees for Advanced Metering Systems. Such fees are not recovered in a TDU's standard metering charge. Accepted abbreviation: Advanced Meter.
  • Competition Transition Charge: A fee charged to offset a TDU's fees for non-securitized expenses affiliated with the shift to competition. Accepted abbreviation: Competition Transition.
  • Energy Efficiency Cost Recovery Factor: A fee charged to defray a TDU's expenses for energy efficiency programs. Such charges are independent fees solely intended for energy efficiency cost recovery, per the approval of the Public Utility Commission (PUC). Accepted abbreviation: Energy Efficiency.
  • Nuclear Decommissioning Fee: A fee charged to offset a TDU's fees for decommissioning nuclear generation sites. This reduces leftover radioactivity to a level and allows discharge of the property for free use, while also ending the license. Accepted abbreviation: Nuclear Decommission.
  • System Benefit Fund: A authorized by the Public Utility Commission, not to surpass 65 cents per megawatt-hour, and cannot be removed from your bill. This charge funds the one-time bill payment assistance, commission administrative expenses, low-income discount, low-income energy efficiency, and customer education programs.
  • Distribution System Charge: The amount charged by a TDU for electricity distribution to customers over poles, wires, and other TDU facilities. This does not include discretionary charges.
  • Transmission System Charge: One or more additional TDU fee(s) added onto a customer's bill in any combination. This includes fees billed by the TDU as 'tariff riders.'
  • Transition Charge: A fee charged to defray a TDU's charges for securitized costs affiliated with the shift to competition.
The above listed are recurring charges, meaning that you will usually see them on each bill you receive. Some of these TDU fees remain the same on each bill ??" meaning that they are fixed (or flat) fees and will not change - while others vary from bill to bill, depending on how many kilowatt-hours (kWh) you use in a billing cycle. For instance, the Advanced Metering Charge should be consistent for each bill, whereas the Meter Charge and Transition Charge change from bill to bill, based on how many kWh are used per billing cycle.

Additionally, a TDU will sometimes charge non-recurring fees, including Disconnect/Reconnect Fees, Forward Switch Fees, Move-In Fees, Meter Re-Read Fees, and Meter Tampering Fees. Non-recurring fees also include charges unrelated to electricity transmission and distribution for your business or residence.

In both instances, your local TDSP sets the TDU fees and New Leaf provides these quotes to our customers without adding any charges. For a complete list of fees and their definitions, please check any of the sites below:

Public Utility Commission of Texas "Charges on Your Electricity Bill"
Public Utility Commission of Texas "Customer Facts"
Public Utility Commission of Texas "Substantive Rules Applicable to Electric Service Providers"
Oncor Tariffs
Centerpoint Tariffs
Texas-New Mexico Power Tariffs
AEP North and Central Tariffs

You can watch the below video for further information on understanding fees.

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