Lawmaker wants state to investigate electricity billing

MERIDEN, Conn. (WTNH) — One state lawmaker is calling for a state investigation into inaccurate electricity rates being posted on his and potentially “thousands” of other Eversource customers’ bills.

Sen. Len Suzio (R-Meriden) said he noticed errors on his monthly Eversource bills going back to September.

He says he is paying much more per kilowatt hour than is being advertised and is calling out Eversource, third party suppliers and the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority.

“I was told my rate in the next monthly bill was 7 cents per kilowatt hour and when I get the next bill, it was $12.99 cents- almost double from what it was supposed to be,” said Sen. Suzio.

The Meriden Republican says he’s learned that the issue started in Jan. 2016 when new billing standards were set and that the companies and PURA were aware of the misleading rate information but did nothing about it.

Related Content: Lawmaker seeks state probe into Eversource bills

“PURA is supposed to be a watchdog and not a lapdog for the utilities and the suppliers,” said Sen. Suzio. “The moment they knew this was affecting thousands of ratepayers, they should have come down very hard, they should have issued a cease and desist order and this should have been cut off in thirty days.”

Sen. Suzio didn’t stop there.

“I think there should be heads that roll at PURA for allowing this because they knew about it since 2016.”

PURA told News 8’s George Colli it will cooperate in any investigation but pushed any comments to Elin Swanson Katz with the Office of Consumer Counsel.

Related Content: Hearing being held for Eversource proposed rate hike

Swanson says the inaccurate rates need to be investigated.

“You should be able to look at the bill and count on the price you’re being charged,” said Swanson Katz. “So, if you’re not being charged the price that’s on your bill, then, yes, that’s a big problem and we’re looking into it.”

Eversource says the third party supplier is to blame for putting the wrong information on its bill.

Eversource spokesman Mitch Gross sent News 8 this statement in response to Sen. Suzio:

Unfortunately, Senator Suzio doesn’t understand how our bills are created and is perpetuating misinformation.  The information provided on customers’ bills about alternative suppliers’ rates comes directly from those suppliers.  In the senator’s case, the third-party supplier he signed up with was responsible for putting the inaccurate rate information into the automatic system.  Our customers deserve accurate and timely information on the supply rate they’re paying and we always encourage customers to check with their supplier so they know what their current rate is. We support any state action to ensure customers receive clear and accurate rate information from their third-party supplier.customers to check with their supplier so they know what their current rate is. We support any state action to ensure customers receive clear and accurate rate information from their third-party supplier.”

News 8 reached out to Sen. Suzio’s third party supplier, Sparks Energy, but the company had no comment.

Coincidentally, Sen. Suzio said the Eversource gas line to his house was shut off when he got home.

Eversource spokesman Mitch Gross spoke with News 8’s George Colli regarding the gas line, saying, “Eversource did not shut off service to Sen. Suzio. There was a gas pressure issue. Moisture in the delivery line. Sometimes happens with gas delivery pressure when there are temperature swings. It’s been fixed.”

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