Eversource has asked the state’s Public Utilities Regulatory Authority to approve an increase that the company said could increase electricity bills for the average customer by nearly 50 percent, or $85 per month, on the supply side of their bill.
Eversource said, if approved, the rate increases would take effect from January 1, 2023, to June 30, 2023.
Eversource is seeking to increase the Standard Service Rate for residential customers who receive energy supplies from Eversource from 12.1 cents per kilowatt-hour to 24.2 cents per kWh, compared to 11.5 cents per kWh last season, Eversource said.
The company said that, on average, Eversource residential electricity customers who use 700-kilowatts of power each month could see an increase of about 48% of their current monthly bill – or $85 per month – on the supply side of their bill.
Eversource said the reasons include energy costs that continue to rise globally and regional electricity supply prices reached their highest levels this year due to increased global demand and the high cost of natural gas, world events, extreme weather, and other issues.
Eversource’s bill includes a supply portion and a delivery portion.
In a statement, Gov. Ned Lamont said he will call the General Assembly into a special session to adopt legislation focused on helping citizens. This includes ensuring the state’s energy assistance program has sufficient funding to ensure support is available for electricity and heating oil costs.
“I am disappointed that electric distribution utilities are enjoying historic profits at the same time that electricity generation rates are increasing and customers are experiencing economic difficulties, and I am calling on UI and Eversource to come to the table with a solution that recognizes investors and executives can and should. support customers while we working together towards a long-term solution that untethers us from the volatility of the global fossil fuel market,” said Lamont.
Attorney General William Tong released a statement, saying the increase would be unaffordable for many families and businesses.
“This is a huge increase that is unaffordable for many Connecticut families and businesses. We pay far too much for our energy in Connecticut as it is, and this season’s rates are nothing short of punishing. My office has intervened on behalf of consumers in every rate case before the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission because we know how much energy costs affect family budgets,” Tong said in a statement.
“We have next to no ability to challenge these supply rates, which is frustrating. Our supply rates always fluctuate between winter and summer, but this is not normal. We are seeing a large global spike in gas costs due to the war in Ukraine and Russian manipulation of gas supplies. Both as a country and country, we have to take a hard look at our energy sources and reduce our reliance on sources like natural gas that produce wild, unaffordable surges in cost,” added Tong.
“As Connecticut families struggle with the rising cost of living, these extremely high rate increases are deeply troubling and should be aggressively investigated by state authorities. Every possible action should be taken to reduce these increases and minimize their impact on consumers. Connecticut families simply cannot afford to pay back to utilities,” US Senator Richard Blumenthal said in a statement.
The Consumer Affairs Office says United Illuminating is also looking to raise its rates.
UI wants to increase rates from $0.1062 to $0.2249 per kilowatt hour, which will affect United Illuminating’s average residential customer.
using 700 kWh per month by increasing the monthly bill by approx
$83.09, according to the Consumer Affairs Bureau.
Utility Bill Payment & Assistance Plans
If you need help paying your utility bills, Eversource offers billing and UI
Help options to help:
- Eversource: Call 1-800-286-2828 (electric) or 800-438-2278 (gas) or get help online here.
- UI: Call 800-722-5584 or get help online here.
State and Federal Aid
Connecticut Energy Assistance Program (CEAP) 1 benefits are also available. The basic benefit for heating bills is between $410 and $1,015, depending on the household income level.
CEAP is administered through the Department of Social Affairs
and local Community Action Agencies throughout the country.
Operation Fuel Assistance
Operation Fuel provides emergency energy and utility assistance to households in Connecticut facing financial crisis. Call (860) 243-2345 or visit https://operationfuel.org/gethelp/.