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Eversource to Decrease Standard Service Rate, Increase Public Benefits Rate

Submitted by Eversource Energy

(May 18, 2024) — As Eversource’s outreach and collaboration continues with the state on solutions to provide rate predictability for customers, the energy company has filed a new Standard Service supply rate with Connecticut’s Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) that would go into effect on July 1, 2024. 

If approved by PURA, the new rate for residential customers receiving energy supply from Eversource would change from the current 14.71 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) to 8.99 cents per kWh. In Connecticut, the energy supply price changes twice a year – January 1 and July 1.  Under state law, Eversource does not earn a profit on the cost of electricity and charges customers only what it pays to generators, without markup, to produce the power for customers.

 “A lower price for energy is certainly good news for customers, and we’re glad it will help to largely offset an increase in the Public Benefits portion of the bill covering the cost to run state-mandated programs,” said Eversource President of Electric Operations in Connecticut Steve Sullivan.  “Unfortunately, volatility in customer bills remains an issue, and we’re committed to helping to mitigate those impacts for customers, which is why we’ve proactively proposed solutions that would create rate stability to help businesses and families plan their budgets.” 

While the Standard Service supply rate will drop on July 1st, at the same time, all residential electric customers will see an increase of nearly $48 per month for 10 months to the “Public Benefits” portion of their bill, which covers costs for state-required and approved programs and policies.

Eversource residential customers who take Standard Service from Eversource – approximately 77% of the energy company’s residential customers – and using an average of 700 kWh per month will see a net increase of approximately $8, or 4%, on their total bill, with the increase to Public Benefits largely offset by the lower energy supply rate.  This net impact is lower than what was previously estimated due to a further drop in the anticipated supply rate. 

Many customers enrolled with a third-party supplier may already have a lower energy price than the current Standard Service rate and are encouraged to continue monitoring EnergizeCT.com for the lowest rate.  How an individual customer’s bill will be affected by these adjustments will depend on how much energy is used, their rate category and weather conditions.

 “This is the largest increase to the Public Benefits portion of the bill on record, and we share customers’ frustration regarding this avoidable rate shock,” added Sullivan. “The two parts of the bill changing July 1 are largely driven by market forces and relate to costs not under our control, nor do we make a profit on these items.  Energy Supply and Public Benefits now make up nearly 60% of the bill for customers on Standard Service, while our delivery costs remain more stable.”

 On average, Connecticut customers use 35% more electricity during the summer months with air conditioners, fans and other appliances working overtime to keep things cool inside. Eversource encourages customers to take advantage of the many energy efficiency solutions and payment programs offered before the hot weather arrives.

 Things customers can do to manage energy usage this summer:

  • Keep air conditioners set as warm as comfort allows. For every degree higher on the thermostat, the air conditioner will use 1-3% less electricity.
  • Don’t block air flow. Keep air vents clear of obstructions such as furniture, curtains, and rugs.
  • Operate major appliances during the cooler parts of the day. Energy is conserved by using appliances like clothes washers and dryers early in the morning or late in the evening when there is also less demand on the electric system.
  • Keep blinds closed when it’s hot out to prevent unwanted heat from entering a home through windows. Using curtains, shades, and blinds can lower indoor temperatures by up to 20 degrees.
  • Switch to ENERGY STAR®-certified LED lights. The energy-efficient bulbs run cooler and last up to 25 times longer than incandescent lights.
  • Set ceiling fans to rotate counterclockwise and at a higher speed in the summer to circulate the air more effectively, creating a cooling, wind chill effect. Remember to turn the fan off when leaving the room.

Help is available for customers who need it.

Eversource encourages customers to enroll in one of its payment plans or assistance programs if they need help with their energy bill.

  • The Matching Payment Program can lower the amount customers owe on energy bills. For every dollar they pay and every dollar they receive from the Connecticut Energy Assistance Program, we will subtract a dollar from the amount they owe.
  • The New Start Program can help pay off a past due balance for electric customers in as little as 12 months. With on-time monthly payments, some of what is owed will be subtracted each month.  (For example, if a budget payment amount is set at $150 per month and the past due balance is $1,200, for every month a customer makes the required $150 payment towards their bill, Eversource will reduce the past-due balance by $100.)
  • Electric Bill Discount. A new electric bill discount is available to customers with a financial hardship status on their electric account. Based on their household income or receipt of a public assistance benefit, customers may be eligible for a 10% or 50% discount off their electric bill per month. For example, if they have a $100 monthly bill, it would be $10 less if they receive a 10% discount or $50 less if they receive the 50% discount.
  • Flexible Payment Plans are available to all customers, regardless of income, to pay their past-due balance over a period of time. Residential customers with active service may be eligible for payment plans up to 18 months.

 Customers are urged to visit Eversource.com/BillHelp to learn more about these programs or to call Eversource at 800-286-2828 for help finding the right plan for them. To learn more about the solutions we’ve proposed to stabilize customers’ bills, visit Eversource.com/Solutions.

 

 

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