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(Fox 4 News Dallas)   Texas business receives an electric bill for more than $80,000. Difficulty: During a time when there was no power   (fox4news.com) divider line
    More: Dumbass, Small business, Business, Mezar Gharbia, Property management, Small business owners, Property, energy company, Legislature  
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1619 clicks; posted to Business » on 21 May 2022 at 8:15 AM (11 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



42 Comments     (+0 »)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2022-05-21 4:10:49 AM  
This is what happens when you have no oversight and are allowed to pretty much do whatever you wany
 
2022-05-21 4:49:00 AM  
Welcome to republicantopia.

You are not at the top of the food chain there, morsel.
 
2022-05-21 6:35:17 AM  
But I thought freedom was a $1.05?
 
2022-05-21 6:47:47 AM  
Just buy power from someone else, let the free market decide.
 
2022-05-21 6:53:22 AM  
You get what you vote for.
 
2022-05-21 7:16:53 AM  
The cruelty is the point.
 
2022-05-21 7:50:36 AM  
Back when Georgia was in early discussions to "deregulate" utilities (natural gas and electricity) and allow price and marketing competition, we went to one of those "home improvement expo" shows. At the time, electricity deregulation was seen as coming first.
The generator sales guys had displays about the coming instability in electric service and everyone needed a home generator. Now that I think about it, they had the vibe of the posters in the Travel Agency in The Truman Show.
i.redd.itView Full Size


Anyway, as it turned out, natural gas got competition first, and it was such a debacle that electric service deregulation never happened. As for the gas pricing, we just lock in a contract rate. I could save a couple of pennies per therm sometimes by switching, but I don't need the headache of changing gas marketers. The do keep marketing different price plans, but the fine print just makes me go "oh HELL no."
It's silly anyway. If I change providers, they're not going to come out and run a new gas line to my house.
 
2022-05-21 8:56:24 AM  

Warthog: The cruelty is the point.


Ted Cruz' wife is a fund manager for Goldman Sachs who just happens to be a major stakeholder in Texas energy.
Thankfully the SCOTUS has been repealing anti-corruption measures lately to increase the freedom.
Pay your bill, deadbeat.
/will still vote straight "R" on the ballot.
//right before it's discarded and an "R" is recorded anyway.
 
2022-05-21 9:04:08 AM  
Says right there in the legislation, "Fark you. Pay me."
 
2022-05-21 10:20:17 AM  
Iowa was all set to deregulate retail electricity when Enron happened and the powers that be got cold feet (thankfully). Hasn't really been a push since, though I expect there will be another push in 10-15 years when Enron gets old enough that lawmakers won't know about it given that we're a state trending redder and redder.

On the natural gas side, it's semi deregulated already. Residential customers basically still have a single regulated provider, but customers on general service or industrial rates can opt to purchase gas from a competitive provider instead of the regulated one (the infrastructure is generally still provided by the regulated incumbent regardless). Unless you know what you're doing, it's generally a bad call to do that for the same reason customers in Texas are getting screwed: you save pennies during stable times but get absolutely farked if the price spikes. And there really doesn't seem to be a push to open those options up to individual households.
 
DVD
2022-05-21 10:24:25 AM  
I was wondering if Texas power was still massively screwing over anyone they could over their own failure in Feb 2021.  I suppose I now have my answer in May 2022.
 
2022-05-21 10:29:20 AM  

TuckFrump: This is what happens when you have no oversight and are allowed to pretty much do whatever you wany


Why do you hate freedom?   Move to Red China.
 
2022-05-21 10:48:32 AM  

Warthog: The cruelty is the point.


To understand why, you should check out the vid below.   BTW, most this applies equally to all 3 of the 'great' monotheistic creeds.

Why I Am Not a Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927)
Youtube NdDYvvevLZk
 
2022-05-21 11:01:28 AM  
Serves them right for living in Texas.
 
2022-05-21 11:06:02 AM  
I don't suppose you could close the business, and re-open under a different LLC....
 
2022-05-21 11:09:15 AM  
To repeat, companies are now simply giving the impression of providing a product or service.  If you happen to get something out of the deal good for you.  But that is not the plan. The plan is to have your money.
 
2022-05-21 11:10:46 AM  
FTFA
"They told us you guys are on a variable rate plan, and during that week, the rates went crazy, and this is your share," he said.

this happened to a lot of people. They were on plans where they pay based on the spot price ( i think that's what it's called ) instead of a locked in price. The spot price went nuts because there was no supply, everyone else, myself included, were on guaranteed rate plans and our bills stayed the same. Variable rate plans can save money if the spot price stays below the guaranteed price but if there's a price spike then you pay. Roll the dice and you roll the dice. :shrug:
 
2022-05-21 11:23:10 AM  

chasd00: FTFA
"They told us you guys are on a variable rate plan, and during that week, the rates went crazy, and this is your share," he said.

this happened to a lot of people. They were on plans where they pay based on the spot price ( i think that's what it's called ) instead of a locked in price. The spot price went nuts because there was no supply, everyone else, myself included, were on guaranteed rate plans and our bills stayed the same. Variable rate plans can save money if the spot price stays below the guaranteed price but if there's a price spike then you pay. Roll the dice and you roll the dice. :shrug:


I can't think of a situation where variable rate anything is a smart decision for a consumer.
 
2022-05-21 11:46:10 AM  

hlehmann: Serves them right for living in Texas.


Had a neighbor who retired and moved to Texas.  This guy told me a CSB about one of his Texas neighbors.  A few years ago the power company was going around putting smart meters on people's houses.  Turned out that the guy in question was a constitutional electricity guy who wasn't having any Obama spy meter put on his house.  When the utility crew showed up, they found him outside holding a gun telling the utility crew they better not step foot on his dirt farm.   Well, the utility company wisely chose not to stir the pot.   A few months latter the power lines in this neighbor were damaged by bad weather.  The constitutional electricity dude had the power line knocked down along with service head and mast.    When he called the power company they told him the service head and mast were his responsibility.  He needed to hire an electrician to repair the service head and the power company would make the final hook-up. Mr. Constitutional Electricity responded by making threats to shoot people at the power company.
 
2022-05-21 11:51:38 AM  

MSkow: I can't think of a situation where variable rate anything is a smart decision for a consumer.


Until the big chill in Texas, that Griddy company sold to a lot of consumers. It allowed people to monitor prices like every 10 minutes and use smart appliances, scheduling, and apps to control energy usage.

Price goes up during the day? Turn your thermostat up/down accordingly and turn off your water heater (if electric). Prices are low at night? Set your laundry to wash/dry overnight and turn your water heater on when rates are cheap.

One big selling point for people who owned EVs was very cheap rates at night to the point that EV charging was almost zero or even free when rates went negative.
 
2022-05-21 11:59:32 AM  
Well, correcting a problem due to market fluctuations would be socialism and you know how much the nazis in texas hate socialism.

They should be forced to pay. After all, it's capitalism working the way that it's supposed to work.

I'd be more sympathetic if they were actually Americans, but they're not.
 
2022-05-21 12:01:44 PM  

MSkow: chasd00: FTFA
"They told us you guys are on a variable rate plan, and during that week, the rates went crazy, and this is your share," he said.

this happened to a lot of people. They were on plans where they pay based on the spot price ( i think that's what it's called ) instead of a locked in price. The spot price went nuts because there was no supply, everyone else, myself included, were on guaranteed rate plans and our bills stayed the same. Variable rate plans can save money if the spot price stays below the guaranteed price but if there's a price spike then you pay. Roll the dice and you roll the dice. :shrug:

I can't think of a situation where variable rate anything is a smart decision for a consumer.


💯
 
2022-05-21 12:44:45 PM  
Jerry Jones has to pay for his Cathedral of Football somehow.
 
2022-05-21 12:50:29 PM  

chasd00: FTFA
"They told us you guys are on a variable rate plan, and during that week, the rates went crazy, and this is your share," he said.

this happened to a lot of people. They were on plans where they pay based on the spot price ( i think that's what it's called ) instead of a locked in price. The spot price went nuts because there was no supply, everyone else, myself included, were on guaranteed rate plans and our bills stayed the same. Variable rate plans can save money if the spot price stays below the guaranteed price but if there's a price spike then you pay. Roll the dice and you roll the dice. :shrug:


Except both business owners quoted in the article claim they weren't using power at all, because they were closed (which makes sense, given that there was a farking blizzard). The article isn't really clear about why they would get those bills, save for the fact they were renting the spaces and their property managers dumped the bill on them.
 
2022-05-21 1:10:11 PM  

hawcian: Except both business owners quoted in the article claim they weren't using power at all, because they were closed (which makes sense, given that there was a farking blizzard). The article isn't really clear about why they would get those bills


Their HVAC might have electric heating and that was running all week.
 
2022-05-21 1:23:59 PM  

Omnivorous: Jerry Jones has to pay for his Cathedral of Football somehow.


Isn't that one of the only billionaire playgrounds in the country funded and built entirely by the owner and private funding instead of taxpayer handouts to the wealthy?
 
2022-05-21 1:38:46 PM  
Pay your bills Bucko.
If you don't like how Texas does it leave...
 
2022-05-21 2:12:47 PM  

MSkow: chasd00: FTFA
"They told us you guys are on a variable rate plan, and during that week, the rates went crazy, and this is your share," he said.

this happened to a lot of people. They were on plans where they pay based on the spot price ( i think that's what it's called ) instead of a locked in price. The spot price went nuts because there was no supply, everyone else, myself included, were on guaranteed rate plans and our bills stayed the same. Variable rate plans can save money if the spot price stays below the guaranteed price but if there's a price spike then you pay. Roll the dice and you roll the dice. :shrug:

I can't think of a situation where variable rate anything is a smart decision for a consumer.


For 99.9% of customers, you're absolutely correct. There are some out there that know what they're doing and have the time and energy to monitor their usage (and/or have backup power to switch to) to make the risk worth it.

But those people are few and far between.  In a former job I reviewed bills from major electricity users who were allowed to negotiate with the power company directly provided other customers weren't negatively impacted. They thought they negotiated a better deal than the standard industrial rate.

They didn't.
 
2022-05-21 2:27:53 PM  
There's another Texas commission involved and by involved I mean really involved.  GOP candidates for slots there are claiming they prefer Midland over Moscow (the socialist evil Moscow, not the Russian stiggin' it to the libs Moscow)

Named for the monopoly of the time, railroads, and created to level the playing field between the monopoly and the public, it's called  the Texas Railroad Commission.

It has read too much Fahrenheit 451 and 1984 and now finds new pricing monopolies, like oil and gas, and makes it their goal to run interference against the public interest for their clients.

They actually refused to order the producers and pipelines to weatherize, even after the big freeze.  Their clients like making an extra big ($16B) for just a week's worth of negligent behavior.   There's no incentive for them act in the public interest.

That Texas is a curious mix of big profit corporations and socialist city, county and regional electricity producers (including the largest one in the US), stigging it to the cities (which vote Democrat) is just fine.    That wind farms and solar may cut into oil and gas revenues (remember this is from five months ago) these consistent sources must be eliminated or sanctioned.
 
2022-05-21 3:07:51 PM  

TuckFrump: This is what happens when you have no oversight and are allowed to pretty much do whatever you wany


Texas Turds
 
2022-05-21 3:09:16 PM  

EvilEgg: Just buy power from someone else, let the free market decide.


Free market for the bottom 99%
 
2022-05-21 3:10:23 PM  

aimtastic: You get what you vote for.


Partly true

On capital hill you get what bigbusiness and the rich vote for
 
2022-05-21 3:11:12 PM  

Warthog: The cruelty is the point.


Making a buck is the point

Usually for sit at home stock owners
 
2022-05-21 3:12:49 PM  

Northern: Warthog: The cruelty is the point.

Ted Cruz' wife is a fund manager for Goldman Sachs who just happens to be a major stakeholder in Texas energy.
Thankfully the SCOTUS has been repealing anti-corruption measures lately to increase the freedom.
Pay your bill, deadbeat.
/will still vote straight "R" on the ballot.
//right before it's discarded and an "R" is recorded anyway.


Run amuck capitalism is a hellava drug
 
2022-05-21 3:15:02 PM  

Fissile: TuckFrump: This is what happens when you have no oversight and are allowed to pretty much do whatever you wany

Why do you hate freedom?   Move to Red China.


Run amuck capitalism is little different
 
2022-05-21 3:18:46 PM  

hlehmann: Serves them right for living in Texas.


America
 
2022-05-21 4:14:57 PM  
If Texas connected Dynamos to Anne Richards and Molly Ivins, they would have the most reliable electrical grid ever.
 
2022-05-21 5:29:03 PM  
If Texas connected Dynamos to Anne Richards and Molly Ivins, they would have the most reliable electrical grid ever.

There's an idea that's dead on arrival.
 
2022-05-21 8:20:08 PM  

hawcian: Except both business owners quoted in the article claim they weren't using power at all, because they were closed (which makes sense, given that there was a farking blizzard).


For clarity of my prior comment about how the HVAC system was probably left running:

I wonder if their business uses a air-sourced heat pump for HVAC. That's an AC that runs in reverse for heating and is excellent for moderate climates, but doesn't work well in low temperatures unless you buy a more efficient model designed for cold climates. In Texas, it wouldn't surprise me if a cheap model was used for heating.

So, what happens when the heat pump faces really cold temperatures is that it comes close to stopping working (or it doesn't work at all). These systems often have a backup electric resistance heater built into the unit, and it might kick on for one or two days a year that you have a very cold snap and you need the backup heat to keep the indoor space warm.

This business was unattended. The thermostat might be left at 68-72 for heating. When the cold snap hit, the heat pump couldn't work and the backup electric resistance heating element of a few kW kicked in right when power costs spiked up to $9 per kWh (the maximum rate billed by ERCOT). For a couple days the business was unknowingly heating their unoccupied space with electricity that was $9 per kWh.

Had they known, they might have set their thermostat at 45-50ºF to keep the bill as low as possible. Hell, it would have been cheaper to take a kerosene heater and go put it in their work space to make sure the pipes didn't freeze for a lower cost than what they were being billed for electric heat.
 
2022-05-21 8:40:44 PM  
Enron designed their rate model, and the electric companies really like the extra cash.  It almost bankrupted the state of California, but Texas can handle it.  Keep those bills coming, and be sure to thank your Republican legislators.
 
2022-05-21 9:39:28 PM  
This tenant doesn't say what kind of property she is in.. a high rise, strip center, free standing quad office, etc...doesn't say if her business is sub-metered or not.

Some rent/lease contracts specify that you will pay X% for your utility portion. Doesn't matter if you are open or not, it can be a fixed percentage of the complete property monthly bill. Her lease should spell out somewhere about her utility rates and so forth. If it doesn't, shame on someone. Also, you can purchase Interruption of Business insurance that covers certain perils if you are unable to operate your business.

Really not enough info in article to say one way or the other. Absolutely not defending the utility company. Not in the slightest. Just curious how her lease reads.

Some info on Triple Net Leases

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/clb-triple-net-leases-allocating-maintenance-expenses.html
 
2022-05-22 7:24:25 AM  

hawcian: chasd00: FTFA
"They told us you guys are on a variable rate plan, and during that week, the rates went crazy, and this is your share," he said.

this happened to a lot of people. They were on plans where they pay based on the spot price ( i think that's what it's called ) instead of a locked in price. The spot price went nuts because there was no supply, everyone else, myself included, were on guaranteed rate plans and our bills stayed the same. Variable rate plans can save money if the spot price stays below the guaranteed price but if there's a price spike then you pay. Roll the dice and you roll the dice. :shrug:

Except both business owners quoted in the article claim they weren't using power at all, because they were closed (which makes sense, given that there was a farking blizzard). The article isn't really clear about why they would get those bills, save for the fact they were renting the spaces and their property managers dumped the bill on them.


Small business owners in a strip mall generally agree to pay a portion of the entire building's utility costs. It's referred to as a net lease.

Unless they have a double or triple net lease, the people in the article are most likely paying for someone else's utility costs and whole building heat. Buildings don't heat themselves.
 
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