Energy suppliers' requested exception draws lawmaker's ire

Published on Thursday, 1 November 2018 20:58
Written by Charles Paullin

@CPaullinNBH

The Retail Energy Supply Association says customers in Connecticut should pay for the potential changes to be made on third-party supplier billing systems through Eversource and United Illuminating, and a Republican lawmaker doesn’t like it.

RESA’s recommendation was written in an exception it filed with the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority in response to PURA’s draft decision on how Eversource and United Illuminating should make changes to their third-party supplier billing systems.

PURA issued the draft decision earlier this month after investigating reports that Eversource and United Illuminating were displaying inaccurate information from third-party suppliers on their bills, including rates for a given month coming in higher than what previous bills were projecting them to be.

RESA, among other objections in its 23-page exception, said the cost should be borne by customers because changing the systems is a benefit to them. It also said that only one supplier is at fault for the billing inaccuracies, and any information missing from suppliers is because of a difference in types of customers that don’t need to provide the information.

State Sen. Len Suzio, R-Meriden, who says he experienced an increase of $140 for one month because of the third-party supplier information discrepancy, said the exception claimed by RESA was “absolutely outrageous.”

“Why should Connecticut consumers pay for the mistakes the electricity suppliers made in their own billing systems?” Suzio said. “This shows that electricity suppliers put profits ahead of the people they are supposed to serve.”

PURA, in its draft decision, said the third parties should pay for the changes to Eversource and UI billing systems, estimated to cost as much as $800,000 and to take up to nine months to implement.

The two companies contended the inaccurate information was a result of the third-party suppliers not supplying correct information and the differences in types of customers not being accounted for.

Last week, Suzio said the proposed deadline for the companies to make the changes should be moved up from July 31 to March 31.

After receiving written exceptions, PURA is scheduled to hear oral arguments on Nov. 20 at 2 p.m. at PURA offices at 10 Franklin Square, New Britain. A final decision is tentatively set to be released Nov. 28.

Charles Paullin can be reached at 860-801-5074 or cpaullin@centralctcommunications.com.



Posted in New Britain Herald, Berlin, General News, State on Thursday, 1 November 2018 20:58. Updated: Thursday, 1 November 2018 21:00.