Bill Glossary

Find definitions about the charges and terminology on your bill. Click the letter the term starts with, or browse the entire glossary.

# A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

100 Watt Sodium Vapor

This is an outdoor area light. The charge for this light is based on the wattage or size (e.g., 100-, 200- or 400-watt) of the specific light. Schedule 15 in Idaho and Oregon includes different wattages for area lighting and flood lighting. The appropriate lighting type and wattage will be listed on the customer’s bill. The charge will be determined within the rate schedule by wattage.

AAM (Annual Adjustment Mechanism)

The Annual Adjustment Mechanism (AAM) is a combination of several rider charges applied to the bill in a per kilowatt-hour (kWh) manner. The AAM includes the Power Cost Adjustment (PCA), the Fixed Cost Adjustment (FCA) and can include other charges applied in a similar manner.

A/C Cool Credit

A/C Cool Credit pays a $5 bill credit for residential customers who allow Idaho Power to cycle (turn off and on) their central air conditioning (A/C) system on a few specific weekdays when summer demand for energy is high or for other system needs.


Your account is identified by a unique 10-digit number assigned by Idaho Power. If you receive service at more than one address, you may have more than one account number. You’ll need this number when paying your bill or contacting Idaho Power.

Account Activity

Details the account’s previous balance; any payments the company has received since the previous billing; the account’s balance forward, if any; the current charges to the account; and the account balance.

Account Balance

The accumulated amount currently billed to the account.

Annual PCA

The Annual Power Cost Adjustment (PCA) is a line item appearing on Idaho customers’ bills. The PCA is adjusted June 1 each year passing along the cost or benefits associated with the differences in projected power supply expenses compared to normal power supply expenses for the same period. The PCA reflects what Idaho Power expects for fuel costs for generating electricity, what it will pay for power on the market to meet demand and what customers receive from the sale of surplus energy in the coming year.

APCU (Annual Power Cost Update)

The Annual Power Cost Update (APCU) consists of two annual filings that become effective for our Oregon customers on June 1 each year. The combined effect of the two filings will adjust rates up or down based on net power supply expenses, including fuel costs, purchased power and sales for resale. The first component, the annual October Update, allows us to update base rates to reflect current power supply costs, assuming normal or average power generated by our hydroelectric plants. The second component, the March Forecast, allows us to temporarily adjust rates for one year to reflect the anticipated actual costs of supplying power to our customers based on our cost forecast for the coming year. The APCU is identified on customers’ bills as Annual PCA.

Auto Pay

With Auto Pay, your monthly electric bill is withdrawn automatically from your bank account. Sign up to manage your account.

Average Daily Use Comparison

Compares the average daily electricity usage for the current month with the same month for the previous year.

Balance Forward

The balance forward amount from your previous bill. It could be a a debit or credit on your bill.

Billing Date

The date your bill was prepared.

Billing kW

The Billing Demand is the average kilowatts (kW) supplied during the 15- minute consecutive period of maximum use during the billing period. This number may be adjusted for power factor.

BLC (Basic Load Capacity)

The basic load capacity is calculated primarily for large commercial and industrial customers. It also is used to calculate the Basic Charge on these customers’ bills. The BLC is the average kilowatts (kW) used during the two months of greatest electricity demand over the past 12 months, including the current month. It is recalculated each month.

BLC (Basic Load Capacity) Charge

Primarily for large commercial and industrial customers, the BLC charge is calculated each month using the average of the two highest peak demand times (measured in 15-minute periods) for the past year. See also BLC.

Boardman Operating Life Adjustment

This charge is for Oregon customers only. It’s designed to recover the revenue requirement impact of the incremental costs and benefits associated with the early shut down of the Boardman Power Plant.

BPA Credit

The BPA Credit began when the Northwest Power Act of 1980 created the Residential Exchange Program (REP) administered by Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). The program was created to provide residential and small farm customers of Pacific Northwest utilities a form of access to low-cost power from the Federal Columbia River Power System, in the form of credits on their power bills. Idaho and Oregon residential, small farm and irrigation customers qualify to receive this credit. The credit is determined by multiplying the customer’s monthly kilowatt-hour (kwh) usage by the per kwh credit amount found in Tariff Schedule 98 (in both Idaho and Oregon). For residential and small farm customers, the credit amount will be reflected on their monthly bills; for irrigation customers, the credit amount will be issued every December.

Budget Balance

The monthly balance due for an account on Budget Pay.

Budget Pay

This plan spreads your electricity charges evenly over a 12-month period. The Budget Pay amount is based on your average monthly billing. Learn more about Budget Pay.

CR (Credit)

All dollar amounts followed with a CR indicate a credit and are deducted from the total bill amount.

Current Bill

The amount due for energy consumed during the most recent billing period. The Current Bill amount includes all charges for electrical service plus any applicable late fees, franchise fees and any prior unpaid balance.

Current Charges

The current billing amount for electric service. If your account is on Budget Pay, or another payment arrangement, this amount may be different than the “Please Pay” amount on the tear-off portion of your bill.

Customer Name

The name of the person responsible for the Idaho Power account.

Demand Charge

Reflects the capacity necessary to meet a monthly peak demand; used primarily for large commercial and industrial customers. The demand charge is multiplied by the average number of kilowatts used during the 15-minute period of peak demand (highest electricity use) each month. The peak demand is calculated either by the kilowatts shown on the meter, or stated in the demand clause of the customer’s rate schedule.


A deposit is sometimes required when you set up new service. It is not prepayment of your bill. The deposit payment is held as security for future payment and is reimbursable after good credit is established with Idaho Power.

Due Date

The date by which Idaho Power should receive your payment to avoid any associated late charges. Idaho customers will be assessed a monthly late charge of 1 percent of any unpaid balance.

Energy Charge

An amount equal to the monthly electricity usage (in kilowatt-hours [kWh]) multiplied by your rate.


Energy Efficiency Services

Pays for the analysis and implementation of energy efficiency programs. It is included on customers’ monthly bills under the “Energy Efficiency Services” line item and is equal to 3.75 percent of the monthly base rate billing amount for Idaho customers and 3 percent of the base rate billing amount for Oregon customers. Learn how to use energy wisely.

Facility Charge

The amount charged to some industrial customers for Idaho Power equipment located beyond the primary meter.

Federal Columbia River Benefits Supplied by BPA

Idaho and Oregon irrigation and residential customers may qualify to receive a credit as part of the Federal Columbia River Power System benefits supplied by Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). These benefits, shared among residential and small farm customers, are a result of a five-year settlement Idaho Power negotiated with BPA in 2001. Refer to BPA Credit above.

Final Bill

The final closing bill for service at your location.

Fixed-Cost Adjustment

The Fixed-Cost Adjustment, or FCA, is designed to remove the unintended financial disincentive Idaho Power experiences when electricity sales decrease due to energy efficiency programs. This rate mechanism annually adjusts rates up or down to recover the difference between the fixed costs authorized by the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (IPUC) and the fixed costs the utility recovers from customers through energy sales during the previous year. The FCA applies to residential service and small general service customers only. The FCA is identified on customers’ bills as AAM (See AAM for more information).

Franchise Fee

Reflects part of the amount Idaho and Oregon cities charge Idaho Power for placing power lines on city property. Idaho Power signs a “franchise” with city governments for this privilege. The fees are collected by Idaho Power and passed directly to the local government entity. The fee may be between 1 and 3 percent of the customer’s bill, depending on applicable government regulations.

Generation Meter

The meter that records the generation by producers with generating plants (solar, wind, biomass, hydropower or fuel cell) for supplying electric power required in their residential, commercial or industrial operations.


Horsepower for a specific irrigation pump (preceded by a number on irrigation account bills).

Interest Applied

The dollar amount accrued on deposits while in possession of Idaho Power. The interest rate is set by the Idaho and Oregon Public Utility commissions annually.


Kilovolt. One kilovolt equals 1,000 volts. A volt is the electric pressure (similar to water pressure) in pounds per square inch.

kW (Kilowatt)

A unit of measure of the amount of electricity needed to operate given equipment. One kilowatt is equal to 1,000 watts.

kWh (Kilowatt-hour)

The unit Idaho Power uses to measure your electricity usage each month. Kilowatt-hour is the most commonly-used unit of measure showing the amount of electricity consumed over time.

kWh Used

The amount of kilowatt-hours (kWh) the meter recorded having been used during the billing cycle.

Late Fee or Late Payment Charge

A fee equal to 1 percent of the past due balance (amount owed to Idaho Power). It occurs when Idaho Power has not received payment by the due date.

Megawatt (MW)

One million watts, or 1,000 kilowatts. Enough electricity to light 10,000 light bulbs (100 watts each) or 36,000 energy-efficient compact fluorescent bulbs (28 watts each). Over one year, 1 MW is enough electricity to meet the average load requirements for about 670 homes. However, during peak times — very hot or cold weather — 1 MW will power fewer than 300 homes.

Meter Constant

A numeric field found on the front of the meter and used to calculate the number of kilowatts (kW) used in your home each month. For example, the constant “Kh = 7.2” means for each revolution of the disk inside your meter, 7.2 kilowatt-hours of electricity have been used. Most residential customers have a meter constant of 1, while larger power customers may have a higher meter constant.

Meter Number

The identifying number on the front of your meter.

Meter Readings (Previous and Current)

The measuring components of an electric meter are read each month to determine the usage amount for billing customers. The previous meter reading amount is what was recorded the month prior; the current amount is for the current month. The previous reading is subtracted from the current reading to determine the kilowatt-hours (kWh) used during the current billing cycle.

New Contact Information

If you need to update your contact information with us, including mailing address and phone number, details about where to send us that new information are on the back of the bill stub. Registered myAccount users may also update their information with us online. Click to register or log in.

Next Read Date

The next time the account’s meter is scheduled to be read.

Number of Days

The number of days of service included in the billing cycle.

Oregon Solar Investment

This charge is for Oregon customers only. It’s designed to recover costs associated with the development of a pilot program for solar photovoltaic energy systems mandated by Oregon House Bill 3690.


The total amount of funds Idaho Power has received from the date of your previous bill to the date the current bill was generated.

Pay Station

Pay stations allow you to pay your electricity bill in person at stores and businesses in communities throughout the company’s service area. Many pay stations offer the convenience of longer business hours and the ability to conduct business on weekends. For faster service, bring a copy of your most recent bill, or your 10-digit Idaho Power account number along with your payment.

PCA (Power Cost Adjustment)

This rate is adjusted for our Idaho customers on June 1 of each year. The PCA passes through to customers costs or benefits associated with the differences in projected power supply expenses compared to normal power supply expenses for the same period (PCA year). This rate may also include the overcollection or undercollection of power supply costs from the previous PCA year. The PCA is identified on customers’ bills as AAM (See AAM for more information). For the “Annual PCA,” as reflected on Oregon bills only, see APCU. PCA information can be found under Idaho Schedule 55.

PCAM (Power Cost Adjustment Mechanism)

The PCAM is the difference between actual net power supply expenses incurred and the net power supply expenses recovered for the preceding January through December period. The PCAM is a deferral account that will be recovered through an Annual Power Supply Expense True-Up rate. PCAM information can be found under Oregon Schedule 56.

Please Pay

The amount owed to Idaho Power for your bill. If the account is on Budget Pay, this amount will reflect your budget balance. If the account is not on Budget Pay, this amount will match the Account Balance.


Customers can pay their Idaho Power bill electronically by transferring funds directly from a designated checking or savings account (automatic bank debiting).

Previous Balance

The amount from the last or a previous bill.

Print Date

The day the bill was printed.

Project Share

Idaho Power partners with The Salvation Army throughout the year to help those who cannot pay winter heating bills due to illness, disability, age or unemployment. Project Share helps people pay electric, natural gas, propane, oil or firewood bills. By making a pledge of $2, $5 or $10, for example, you can help someone less fortunate meet the demands of winter heating and summer cooling. The back of your bill stub has a place to mark the pledge amount you wish to add to your monthly bill amount.


Any time a change is made to the rate or billing period, the bill is prorated to correspond with the change. For example, if you sign up for service on the 10th of the month, your account will be “prorated,” or charged only for that time frame. Prorated billing also happens if electricity rates change mid-month and Idaho Power needs to calculate part of the month at a different rate.

PSA (Power Supply Adjustment) Charge

This Oregon rate charge recovers past power supply costs that occurred in 2007. This charge will end once those costs are recovered. This charge does not have a separate rate schedule, but can be found listed under each Oregon rate schedule.

Pwr Fac (or Power Factor)

Reflects the amount of extra work (measured in volt-amperes) needed to provide electricity to some industrial customers. This is a value between zero and 1.0. Customers with less efficient equipment (which use more energy than necessary to supply the required watts) will have a power factor lower than 1.0. The power factor is calculated for each customer by dividing the maximum demand (measured in kilowatts) by the kilovolt-ampere (kVa) demand established by the customer.

Pwr Fac Adj (or Power Factor Adjustment)

When a customer’s power factor is less than 90 percent (0.90), as measured under actual load conditions, Idaho Power may adjust the kilowatts (kW) demanded that month to reflect the extra volts-amperes generated to meet that demand. The adjusted demand is figured by multiplying the measured kW (as shown on the meter) by 90 percent, and dividing by the customer’s unique power factor.

Rate Schedule

Identifies your account’s rate plan, which determines the rate you are billed. These plans include the following:

  • I01, I05 or O01 — Residential
  • I07 or O07—Small General Service (Small Commercial)
  • I09, O09 (P, S or T)—Large General Service (Large Commercial)
  • I19, O19 (P, S or T)—Large Power Service (Industrial)
  • I24, O24, I25 (S, SB, C, or CB)—Irrigation Service

Find a full list of Idaho Power’s rate schedules and an explanation of each schedule’s regulations.

Reading Type

Identifies how the meter read was made. Different reading types include the following:

  • Regular: Usage is determined by reading your meter electronically or by an Idaho Power meter specialist.
  • Estimated: Usage is determined by estimating your read based on past energy use or the past usage history of your location. This may be done when your meter cannot be located or accessed.
  • Verified: Usage for a manual read meter is verified by an Idaho Power meter specialist.
  • Customer: Usage is determined by the customer reading their own meter. This option is only available if Idaho Power is unable to access the meter.

Seasonal Rates

Rates for all customer groups change between summer and non-summer seasons. The summer season begins June 1 each year and ends Aug. 31. The non-summer season begins Sept. 1 and ends May 31. Irrigation customers pay “in-season” and “out-of-season” rates instead of summer and non-summer. The irrigation season begins with the May meter read cycle date and ends as of the September meter read cycle date. For Irrigation customers, the season begins June 1 and ends Sept. 30.

Service Agreement No.

A Service Agreement No. (or Number) is an identification number for service at a particular location. It serves as an ‘implied contract’ that contains the terms and conditions by which Idaho Power provides service to a customer and by which the customer agrees to compensate the company.

Service Charge

The service charge is a flat fee that helps recover costs involved with maintaining meters, lines and billing.

Service Establishment Charge

A one-time fee required to start electric service at an address. Normally, it is included on your first bill and is due by the due date specified.

Service Level

The service level is a segment of customers within one rate schedule, based on the amount of voltage required by the customer. The three service levels are as follows:

  • S — Secondary Service is taken at 480 volts or less, or where the definitions of Primary Service and Transmission Service do not apply. Idaho Power is responsible for providing the transformation of power voltage to the level at which it is to be used by the customer taking Secondary Service.
  • P — Primary Service is service at 12.5 kilovolts (kV) to 34.5 kV. A customer taking Primary Service is responsible for providing the transformation (step-down) of power to the voltage at which it is to be used by that customer.
  • T — Transmission Service is service taken at 45 kV or higher. A customer taking Transmission Service is responsible for providing the transformation of power to the voltage at which it is to be used.

Service Location

The address where the account’s service is delivered.

Service Period

The start and end dates for a specific bill. These dates are approximately the same each month.

Solar Photovoltaic Pilot Program Rider

This charge is for Oregon customers only. It is designed to recover costs associated with the development of a pilot program for solar photovoltaic energy systems mandated by Oregon House Bill 3690.

Time of Use (TOU) Rates

A rate system for customers, designed to reflect the higher energy costs during the peak months of the year (see Seasonal Rates) and hours of the day.

Both the energy charge and the demand charge (see Rate Schedule) may vary by hour and month.

Get more information about our Time of Day Plan, or contact us.


The practical unit of power defined as the rate at which energy is delivered or consumed. The basic unit for measuring the power used by an electrical device.

# A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

For assistance with a PDF on this page or to request a PDF in an alternate format, please contact Customer Service at 208-388-2323 or 1-800-488-6151