AP Photo/Ben Margot

New Charge On PG&E Bills Causes Confusion

Mike Colgan
April 12, 2019 - 11:32 am

SAN JOSE — Customers have spotted a misleading new charge on the front page of their PG&E bills. The good news is that the confusing fee is not costing them what it appears. 

Many cities, including San Jose, have adopted a clean energy program that shows up on utility bills as a new charge. It was listed as $45 in a sample bill that KCBS Radio reviewed. 

That amount however is deducted from the bill on subsequent pages by what's called the generation credit.

"Unfortunately, when you look at page one of the bill, it looks like a brand-new charge," said San Jose Clean Energy Deputy Director Zach Struyk. "It looks like the PG&E number hasn't gone down."

Many customers don't realize the connection between the charge and credit. San Jose started a clean-energy clinic to help customers understand their bills.

"We're sensitive to that," said Struyk, but he added there are regulations about how bills are presented to customers.