Sharyland Utilities Customers Upset Over Unusually High Delivery Service Charges

Sharyland Utilities Customers Upset Over Unusually High Delivery Service Charges

Zora Asberry
NewsWest 9

Some Sharyland Utilities customers are upset as their electric bills have doubled, even tripled, over the last few months. Sharyland officials say it's  because they are now regulated by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT).

$263.25 is the delivery charge one Sharyland customer received last month, not including the actually energy charge and taxes which brought her bill to $429.26. However, she isn't the only one getting these outrageous charges, numerous customers of Sharyland have reached out to NewsWest 9 looking for answers as to why their energy bills are so high. Some even stating that their bill has run in to the thousands.

Brandi Edens, Sharyland customer out of Big Spring, said "We really started paying attention in September when we noticed our bill was triple what it was before."

Sharyland Utilities filed what is called a rate case, which is an application made to the PUCT to increase their customers rate.

Paul Schulze, Vice President of Public Affairs for Sharyland, said, "The ultimate practical effect of the rate case was that, the non-residential (rates) went down and the residential (rates) had to go up, we serve mostly rural communities and less customer density with greater distance between the meters so it costs a little bit more to serve customers in those rural communities."

But the current rate case has caused a problem for many residents that live in more rural areas like Big Spring, but also in bigger cities like Midland and Odessa.

"I'm tired of being robbed every month, which is basically what's happening. There's no sense in me having to pay three times my electric bill just to be able to get service out here," Edens said.

Sharyland officials suggest that customers should conserve as much as possible and shop around for other energy providers to lower their monthly bills.

"Our regulated delivery service is just one part of the customer bill, there's also the unregulated energy charge for the actual power they consume. So we always encourage our customers to shop around and choose a company that best suits their needs and to make sure they're getting the best energy rate possible," Schulze said.

The next rate case is scheduled to happen around the middle of 2016 and Sharyland utilities encourages their customers to voice any comments or concerns to assure that fair rates can be established in the upcoming year.