San Diego Gas & Electric bills expected to decrease in October

SAN DIEGO — San Diego Gas & Electric bills are expected to decrease next month due to a settlement involving the closure of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station, the utility announced Monday.

SDG&E sought the approval of the California Public Utilities Commission to push the reductions up a month from November, when they were originally set to take effect.

SDG&E said customers should expect to see a one-month refund of $13.80 on their October statements and a recurring refund of $1.32 each month. Customers in SDG&E’s California Alternate Rates for Energy program will see an $8.50 refund in October and a recurring 81-cent refund each month.

“We’re happy to reach the final chapter in the (San Onofre) settlement and provide these savings for our customers,” said Dan Skopec, SDG&E’s vice president of regulatory affairs.

Southern California Edison, the majority owner, decided in 2013 to close the San Onofre plant, more than a year after a small, non-injury leak in a steam generator forced one of the two reactors to be shut down. The other reactor was already down for maintenance.

Edison opted to decommission the seaside plant near the Orange County border instead of following a costly restart procedure.

The CPUC and SDG&E, a co-owner of the plant, reached their original settlement in 2014, but an investigation into alleged inappropriate communication stalled the settlement going into effect. The CPUC and SDG&E estimate customer bills are expected to be reduced by roughly $750 million in total.