Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I have disputed my April invoice from TLC...

My peak demand (kW load) reduced in the winter of 2010 as compared to the winter of 2009. Many other TLC customers - most probably some thousands of them - will be in the same boat.

TLC have previously clearly indicated that new demand charges take effect each April and stay in place for a full year.

Therefore I think my reduced lines charges should have effect from 1 April - not 1 May 2011 as TLC seem to think is acceptable. It's only a difference of $9.53 in my case and for one month but there's a principle at stake as far as I'm concerned. Obviously, to be fair, any remedy should also generally apply to all other TLC customers in a similar situation.

I've made my position clear to TLC - this sort of thing just isn't acceptable - and didn't pay the extra $9.53. Maybe not the best way to "win friends and influence people" but this really offends me.

Here's the earliest statement from TLC that I've found with their position on this - it's the 6 December 2006 letter from John Anderson to all TLC customers, describing the new system (then called "FairPay", which is kind of ironic really). In particular, read item 2 in the numbered list of "key points". (You can click on the image to get a larger version - I've smudged out most of the address details and the red date/time at upper right is from my camera.)

Seems pretty clear to me and there's more in the same vein if you care to read through the various newsletters and other documents that have come out of TLC since that time.

[Update: 10 June 2011] TLC's board has decided to credit all customers affected by the extra month at the old rate according to TLC's Customer Services Manager David Hearn. I was informed via email on Tuesday morning this week and the message was repeated at TLC's presentation in Kakahi in the evening. The credit is to be applied with the June invoices, and all affected customers will receive a letter. The total of the credits applied was $180,000 according to David Hearn at the Kakahi meeting. I've since received my June invoice with an adjustment shown, but no letter has arrived yet.