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Common Energy Terms

ADVANCED METERING CHARGE – A charge assessed to recover a TDU’s charges for Advanced Metering Systems, to the extent that they are not recovered in a TDU’s standard metering charge. Acceptable abbreviation: Advanced Meter.

AFFILIATED RETAIL ELECTRIC PROVIDER (AREP) – A retail electric provider that is affiliated with or the successor in interest of an electric utility certificated to serve an area.

AGGREGATOR – A person joining two or more customers, other than municipalities and political subdivision corporations, into a single purchasing unit to negotiate the purchase of electricity.

BASE CHARGE – A charge assessed during each billing cycle without regard to the customer’s demand or energy consumption.

COMPETITIVE RETAILER (REP) – A Retail Electric Provider, or a Municipally Owned Utility, or an Electric Cooperative that offers customer choice in the restructured competitive electric power market or any other entity authorized to provide Electric Power and Energy in Texas. For purposes of this tariff, a Municipally Owned Utility or an Electric Cooperative is only considered a Competitive Retailer where it sells retail Electric Power and Energy outside its certified service territory.

DELIVERY – The movement of Electric Power and Energy through Company’s electric lines and other equipment, including transformers, from the Point of Supply to the Point of Delivery.

DELIVERY SYSTEM – Company’s electric lines, Meters, and other equipment, including transformers, used in the delivery of Electric Power and Energy.

DEMAND – The rate at which electric energy is used at any instant or averaged over any designated period of time and which is measured in KW or KVA.

DEMAND CHARGE – A charge based on the rate at which electric energy is delivered to or by a system at a given instant, or averaged over a designated period, during the billing cycle.

ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE (COOP) – Customer-owned electric utility as defined in PURA § 11.003(9) that distributes electricity to members and that receives lower-cost financing through the federal government. In Texas, co-ops can choose to opt into the competitive retail market.

ELECTRICITY FACTS LABEL – A standardized format, as described in § 25.475 (e) of this title (relating to Information Disclosures to Residential and Small Commercial Customers), for disclosure of information and contract terms made available to customers, and marketed under a specific Electricity Facts label.

ENERGY CHARGE – A charge based on the electric energy (kWh) consumed.

ENERGY EFFICIENCY COST RECOVERY FACTOR – A charge assessed to recover a TDU’s costs for energy efficiency programs, to the extent that the TDU charge is a separate charge exclusively for that purpose that is approved by the Public Utility Commission. Acceptable abbreviation: Energy Efficiency.

ERCOT – The Electric Reliability Council of Texas, Inc. refers to the independent organization and, in a geographical sense, refers to the area served by electric utilities, municipally owned utilities, and electric cooperatives that are not synchronously interconnected with electric utilities outside the state of Texas.

ESI I.D. (ELECTRIC SERVICE IDENTIFIER) – An ESI ID is a unique number within the Texas electric market assigned to each delivery point-of-service by the TDSP. This number stays with the residence it is assigned to (it does not move with the customer). To find your ESI I.D., look at a current electric bill for that same service address. If you are new to this address, record your meter number (outside of your home) and call us at 800 MY CIRRO and we will cross-reference this number for you.

kW – Kilowatt, the standard unit for measuring electricity demand, equal to 1,000 watts.

kWh – Kilowatt-hour, the standard unit for measuring electricity energy consumption, equal to 1,000 watt-hours.

LATE PAYMENT PENALTY – A charge for late payment in accordance with Public Utility Commission rules.

LOAD FACTOR – The ratio, usually stated as a percentage, of actual KWH used during a designated time period to the maximum KW of Demand times the number of hours occurring in the designated time period. Formula is total kwh/peak kw/number of hours in month.

METER or METERING EQUIPMENT – A device, or devices, together with any required auxiliary equipment, for measuring the amount of Electric Power and Energy delivered.

METER READING – The process whereby Company determines the information recorded by Metering Equipment. Such reading may be obtained manually, through telemetry, or by estimation, in accordance with the procedures and practices authorized under this Tariff.

MISCELLANEOUS GROSS RECEIPTS TAX REIMBURSEMENT – A fee assessed to recover the miscellaneous gross receipts tax imposed on retail electric providers operating in an incorporated city or town having a population of more than 1,000. Acceptable abbreviation: Gross Receipts Reimb.

MUNICIPALLY OWNED UTILITY (MUNI) – A utility owned, operated and controlled by a municipality or by a nonprofit corporation, the directors of which are appointed by one or more municipalities, as defined in PURA § 11.003(11).

POWER FACTOR – The ratio of real power, measured in KW, to apparent power, measured in KVA, for any given load and time, generally expressed as a percentage.

PROVIDER OF LAST RESORT (POLR) – A REP certified in Texas that has been designated by the Commission to provide a basic, standard retail service package to requesting or default customers.

PUC ASSESSMENT – A fee assessed to recover the statutory fee for administering the Public Utility Regulatory Act.

RETAIL ELECTRIC PROVIDER (REP) – As defined in PURA § 11 31.002(17) , a person, certificated pursuant to PURA § 11 39.352), that sells Electric Power and Energy to Retail Customers.

SALES TAX – Sales tax collected by authorized taxing authorities, such as the state, cities and special purpose districts.

TDU DELIVERY CHARGES – The total amounts assessed by a TDU for the delivery of electricity to a customer over poles and wires and other TDU facilities not including discretionary charges.

TERMS OF SERVICE AGREEMENT (TOSA) – Contract provided to all residential and business (less than 50KW peak demand) customers that explains the terms and conditions of their service.

TRANSMISSION AND DISTRIBUTION UTILITY (TDU) – An electricity distribution company regulated by the PUCT that is responsible for maintaining local poles and wires, and responding to emergencies and power outages.

YOUR RIGHTS AS A CUSTOMER (YRAC) – Brochure explaining customer rights under PUCT law that is provided annually (at a minimum) to all residential and business customers.