BERLIN, CT (WFSB): Frustration over a rise in Eversource tariffs has sparked a larger conversation about electricity tariffs in Connecticut.
In response to the increase, annoying customers are expected to gather outside Eversource’s headquarters in Berlin on Friday afternoon.
On the same day, the Public Services Regulatory Authority (PURA) issued a letter saying it is temporarily suspending approved tariff increases and ordering the company to “immediately restore tariffs to those in effect on June 30, 2020,” saying that should happen specifically as soon as possible, but no later than August 7, 2020.
PURA also said on Friday that it will “re-examine the administrative changes to the energy and transmission adjustment clauses provisionally allowed by its June 26, 2020 letter.”;
“The intent of this review is to ensure that Eversource does not collect too much short-term income at the expense of people who are in turn during this period of financial trouble,” PURA said.
Eversource said later in the day that the company will work over the weekend to reverse its rates to June figures.
Connecticut residents pay the highest electricity rates in the country.
Thus, PURA’s Wednesday decision to revise Eversource’s July 1 rate hike could turn out to be a victory for residents.
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Lawmakers have also asked PURA to consider canceling the increase.
Meanwhile, Attorney General William Tong and U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal are pushing back spending by federal regulators.
Tong said he also plans to resort to PURA against the Eversource walk.
“We analyze all the tracks and don’t leave any stones flying to combat these climbs,” Tong said.
Gov. Ned Lamont applauded the suspension of the tariff increase saying that “Today’s decision by PURA is good news for people in the rest of our state. PURA’s shutdown today in the rise in delivery rates reassures our residents that the reconsideration of applications by utilities may happen and, most importantly, that customers will not overpay in the meantime. , we have revived our pressure on the federal government to deal with long-term frustrations with federal-mandated delivery costs. “
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PURA has already sent a list of questions to Eversource, giving the company until August 13th.
On Friday morning, Eversource released a statement saying it is working with customers to help reduce bills through “customer service programs.”
“We share our customers’ concerns and know that this is an unexpected cause of inconvenience during an already difficult time, ”said Eversource senior vice president and general manager Penni Conner. “We are committed to working one-on-one with customers to help reduce energy bills and provide flexible payment solutions. Our customer service number is 800-286-2000, and we are here to help any customer who call ”.
Eversource argues that higher-than-normal bills were motivated primarily by increased energy use in the summer, due to higher temperatures.
“We’re providing essential service, so the customer, I know, values that we provide safe and reliable power,” said Penni McLean-Connor, senior vice president and head of customer service at Eversource.
It also includes two recent tariff increases added to the delivery component of the bill, saying that “a state-mandated energy subsidy went into effect in July to support the continued operation of the Nuclear Power Plant. Millstone. In addition, another tariff was increased to support the reliability of the network and the safe operation of the Eversource high voltage transmission system. “
Earlier this week, Dominion Energy, which owns the Millstone Plant, said Eversource doesn’t tell the whole story.
In an email to Channel 3, his spokesman said: “Power is being sold at a flat rate of 4,999 cents per kilowatt hour, the lowest price of the carbon-free resource in Connecticut published so far and a 32 percent lower than the lowest standard bid price.Eversource, which is about 7 cents per kilowatt hour.This contract went into effect in October 2019, nine months before Eversource’s last rate, which went It was reviewed and approved by all state energy regulators. “
The company says anyone in need of financial help should contact them at 800-286-2000 or click here.
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