PECO to consumers: Brace for higher electricity bills

Panay Electric Co. (PECO) gears up for the El Niño Phenomenon
Panay Electric Co. (PECO) gears up for the El Niño Phenomenon

Iloilo City’s sole power distributor, Panay Electric Company (PECO), warned its consumers of higher electricity rates due to the imposition of real property tax (RPT) on electrical facilities.

Engineer Randy Pastolero, PECO vice president for operations and general manager, said their consumers will bear the increase in electricity rates.

But according to him, the increase will be implemented on a staggered basis to cushion the impact on consumers.

The Office of the City Assessor recently ordered its personnel to conduct field work and inspect all electric posts or poles, and electric meters.

City Assessor Nelson Parreño, in a press release, said the order was in accordance with the Supreme Court (SC) Ruling (G.R. No. 166102) dated August 5, 2015 in the case of Manila Electric Company vs. The City Assessor And City Treasurer of Lucena City.

“The SC ruling on the said case is very favorable considering that it will generate more revenues for the city of Iloilo which will redound to the benefit of its constituents,” Parreño stressed.

Pursuant to the recent SC decision, the following facilities are not exempted from RPT under the Local Government Code: transformers, electric posts or poles, transmission lines, insulators, and electric meters.

Pastolero said they are currently coordinating with Parreño’s office.

As of now, he could not give an estimate of how much the posible increase will be imposed.

Pastolero is expecting that PECO will pay millions of pesos in RPT to the city government considering that they own at least 10 thousand electric posts in the city. IMT