CT Utilities Get Rate Hikes But Threaten to Withhold Improvements

CT utilities insist that PURA reimburse their storm maintenance costs. Find out how this could affect your future energy bills.

Do Utilities Want More Than Rate Hikes?

CT utilities win rate hike but demand more from PURA. Find out how this could affect your future energy bills.
CT electric utilities that were granted rate hikes now threaten to not invest in grid improvements. Find out how PURA policies may have played a role and how these could affect your bills.

CT pays some of the highest electricity rates in the country. And bills could get even higher when rate hikes go into effect. But now, one CT utility threatens to cut spending unless they get more. Let’s talk about why CT utilities threaten grid improvements even after getting the rate hikes they wanted.

Why CT Utilities Get Rate Hikes

Back in March, we reported that CT utilities filed for a rate hike request. These increases were said to be the result of policy changes that were adopted over the past few years.

For instance, in 2017 CT lawmakers passed the Millstone credit to prevent its owner, Dominion Energy, from closing it. The law lets PURA nudge Eversource into buying power from the Millstone nuclear power station as a zero-carbon source. The utility claims that this mandate alone cost them over $600 million. The rate hike seeks to recoup costs for unpaid bills. These have been piling up since the PUA enacted a moratorium on shutdowns back in 2022.

Fast forward to late April. PURA commissioners approved a utility rate increase for distribution charges starting on July 1 and lasting for 10 months. Because this increase affects distribution charges, all CT electric customers will have to pay it. And that includes customers with cheap energy plans from retail suppliers.

At the time of writing, Eversource has not indicated how much their customer’s bills will rise. However, UI customers may see bills rise by as much as $30.

CT Utilities Threaten To Withhold Grid Improvements

Despite getting their rate increase approved, Eversource announced recently that it may cut back on grid reliability investments. According to reporting, the utility could cut improvement spending by about $500 million over the next five years. Eversource contends that PURA has been too slow to approve reimbursing the utility’s losses, including $635 million in storm damages (from 2018-2021) and $400 million in unpaid bills.

The Governor’s office has pointed out that that Eversource has a legal obligation to maintain grid reliability. So they are confident that Eversource will meet this obligation. In addition, Senator Needleman responded to the announcement by saying that “…the next step is to look very closely at the franchise agreements…”. While Needleman hopes the situation can de-escalate, he says that can only happen if the utility makes their investments.

How CT Customers Can Respond

The July 1 rate increases are right around the corner. And they will make for higher energy bills this summer. Unfortunately, higher distribution rates cannot be avoided. But, you can still find savings on the supply side of your bill if you shop cheap plans from the best energy companies in town. Right now, some plans can save you around 10-30% on supply charges. Many plans also come with further savings from shopping and dining discounts.

The best place to start shopping for cheap energy is https://www.ctenergyratings.com. You can also count on us for all the news that could affect your bills.

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