The Massachusetts attorney general has asked the state’s Department of Public Utilities to help mitigate electricity “rate shock” to consumers and open an investigation into ways to reduce sudden spikes. The attorney general also requested that the DPU examine allowing more flexibility in the timing of recovery for basic service supply costs for other rate classes, open a separate investigation into the sufficiency of competition in the electricity supply market, and review its basic service procurement practices.
Last month, National Grid filed its basic service rates and warned that, due to higher power supply prices, typical residential customers would see an increase on their “winter” electric bills (a six-month period) of 37% compared to last year. The DPU approved National Grid’s filing on September 23, 2014.
Higher winter electric rates are plaguing parts of New England, including New Hampshire and Maine, primarily due to the high cost of natural gas delivered to the region during winter months.