THE PATCH: CON ED BILLS SPIKE, SHOCK CONSUMERS
Posted by Lanning Taliaferro
The colder-than-usual temperatures this winter have led to higher-than-expected bills from Con Ed, and customers are freaked out.
“We’ve lived in Sleepy Hollow for 2 years and our bill has been between 6-9 cents per kwh and then suddenly this last bill jumped up to 17.9 cents per kwh,” said one Facebook commenter. “We rent an apartment, I don’t even want to think what a bill for a whole house would be.”
“We all are accustomed to our Con Ed bills going up to some extent, but something is going on that isn’t even approaching ‘right,’” said Jeane Pedro. ”People are posting about their new Con Ed bills that have doubled since last month, some going over $1000.”
Unfortunately the bills aren’t a mistake.
Con Ed spokesman Allan Drury said the exceptionally cold winter weather caused the price of natural gas to rise.
“That has impacted not only customers’ natural gas bills but also their electric bills (since natural gas is used in the generation of much of the electricity in the area),” he said. “Con Edison does not make a profit on the natural gas or electricity. We buy the energy on the market and deliver it to customers at cost. When the price rises, customers pay more. When the price drops, customers benefit.”
Con Ed is encouraging customers to consider level-payment plans to smooth out their bills. Level-payment plans and other aspects of the recent bills increases are explained here.
Calls are coming in from upset customers, said State Sen. Greg Ball (R-Putnam).
“A 100% increase is absolutely unbearable for senior citizen on a fixed income struggling to stay in their homes,” Ball said. “Let it be clear, I am glad to hear that Con Edison has made a good faith effort to allow customers to spread their energy costs out over a 12 month period, yet these sky-high energy bills are unbelievable.” (ARTICLE)