Electric rates are based on the cost to purchase power on the wholesale market and cost of system operation. Umatilla Electric purchases most of its power from The Bonneville Power Administration, a federal marketing agency in charge of hydropower generation in the Pacific Northwest. Hydropower is the least expensive source of power generation, but prices can change depending upon many factors, including supply and demand.
There is no set time for rate adjustments. Increases or decreases in electric rates are determined by the UEC board of directors, after analysis of future power-need projections, system operation costs, and prices. Rates are based on cents-per-kilowatt hour of usage. The average residential usage is about 1,400 kWh per month.