The major components of electric bills in Ohio are the price of electricity, also known as generation supply, and the price for the transmission and distribution of that electricity. In some cases the supply of electricity and the delivery of electricity are performed by different companies, a supplier and an electric distribution utility.
Beginning in 2001, consumers in Ohio became eligible to choose or “shop” for the generation portion of their bill. Ohio has since established an energy choice program which allows customers to compare current electricity prices among all certified suppliers. Eligible Ohioans who “shop” effectively choose a supplier to provide electricity to their distribution utility who then ensures delivery of electricity to their homes and businesses.
Electric distribution companies deliver electricity to all customers, offer payment plans and respond to emergency calls. You should call your electric distribution utility if you experience a disruption of service.
What are standard service offer rates and how are they established?
The standard service offer (SSO) is the default rate for generation supply an electric distribution utility charges a customer who decides not to shop. In order to secure electricity for customers on the SSO rate, electric distribution utilities conduct competitive wholesale auctions and the average price of the electricity secured through the auction is the main component of the SSO. Other components of the SSO rate are PUCO approved bypassable riders and administration fees.
If I have chosen an electricity supplier but would like to go back to my distribution utility’s SSO rate, how can I do so?
If you would like to return to your distribution utility’s SSO rate, you may contact either your current energy supplier or your electric distribution utility and let them know you would like to return to your distribution utility’s SSO. Prior to canceling your contract, make sure you are aware of the terms of your contract as there may be an early termination fee.
What does the term “price to compare” mean?
“Price to compare” is a benchmark customers can use to compare SSO rates to offers from competitive suppliers. The price to compare represents that amount per kWh you will no longer pay to your electric distribution utility if you decide select a competitive supplier. To save money on your electricity bill, you may choose a supplier whose rate is lower than the price to compare.
Where can I find my utility’s SSO or price to compare?
You can find the price to compare on your electric bill, and regulated distribution companies are required to have a resource explaining each component of your bill on their website. The price to compare can also be found on our Energy Choice Ohio website.
How do I know if I am eligible to participate in the energy choice program to shop for my energy supplier?
Customers of PUCO-regulated electric distribution utilities, except for those who participate in the Percentage of Income Payment Plan Plus (PIPP), are eligible to participate in the energy choice program. If you are unsure of your status, you can contact your electric distribution utility.
Municipal and co-operative utilities are not regulated by the PUCO and therefore do not participate in energy choice.
How can I learn more about the wholesale auction process?
The SSO auctions are a complex process that help reduce variability in electricity prices over time and ensure the electricity market in Ohio stays competitive. To learn more about each utility’s competitive wholesale auction, visit their auction website: