Senator Maziarz cheers National Grid rate decrease

George D. Maziarz

March 25, 2013

Senator Maziarz is pleased to learn that the New York State Public Service Commission recently adopted a three-year rate plan for National Grid electric and natural gas that will reduce rates for upstate operations, with customers expecting to see lower bills next month. The significant savings to customers comes largely from the expiration of a $190 million surcharge called the competitive transition charge. The continued necessity of this charge was an issue first raised by Senator Maziarz at a hearing three years ago.

In 2010 the Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee held a hearing related to National Grid’s expenditures and proposed rate increases. During that hearing, Senator Maziarz expressed great concern over the extended inclusion of the Competitive Transition Charge, a surcharge that is paid by ratepayers to help companies transition from a non-competitive to a competitive marketplace. Since the hearing, Senator Maziarz has worked cooperatively with National Grid toward reducing this charge. Through the adopted plan, this charge will expire, which will lead to great savings for residents.

“This surcharge was of concern to me three years ago and was something that I have been working with National Grid to eliminate for some time now,” said Senator Maziarz, Chairman of the Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee. “The elimination of this surcharge produces a large savings for ratepayers, and I commend National Grid for including this elimination in their three-year plan. I have long been committed to reducing electric rates for residents and I will continue to advocate for even lower rates moving forward.”

The adopted plan will see the average residential electric bill DECREASE by about 6.6% and the average residential gas bill DECREASE by about 4%. Likewise the delivery charges for year one of the plan will decrease by 8.7% from the current rate, and while year’s two and three will see a slight increase of 2.8%, this rate will still be almost 6% lower than it is today.

“When I raised questions about this surcharge over 3 years ago, I did so to fight for the fair and proper utility charges for New York State residents,” said Senator Maziarz. “I thank National Grid for working with me and showing real leadership on this important issue. Eliminating this surcharge is the right thing to do and it will save my constituents money at a time when that savings is badly needed.”