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AARP NH Urges PUC to Protect Eversource Customers from Unfair Rate Hikes During Pandemic

Serious stressed old couple looking at calculator feeling worried

AARP New Hampshire is fighting to keep your utility rates fair and reasonable in these challenging times. Recently, we filed a petition asking the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission to account for the effects of the coronavirus pandemic as the commission weighs a rate proposal from Eversource.

Our petition asks the PUC to require additional testimony from Eversource, which has proposed a 24 percent rate hike on residential customers. The PUC should revisit the calculations and projections that will determine Eversource’s future rates based on the new economic climate, including an updated forecast of demand.

“As Granite Staters face the uncertainties of the pandemic, we can’t afford utility rate hikes based on outdated information,” said AARP NH State Director Todd Fahey. “Interest rates have dropped, energy demand has been reduced, and more Granite Staters are struggling to make ends meet.”

The Eversource proposal before the PUC would:

  • Raise residential rates 23.9%, which is higher than any other rate class.
  • Establish a new surcharge (DRAM) that almost automatically increases customer bills.
  • Increase the customer charge—the fixed charge customers pay before even turning on the lights.
  • Continue a surcharge (LRAM), also known as “decoupling,” which can raise rates when customers’ usage declines.
  • Continue the time of day rate, under which most customers are worse off than they would be on the standard rate.

AARP New Hampshire urges its 220,000 of members in the Eversource service area to tell the PUC to reject these unfair proposals. Fahey added, “The PUC will hear from AARP members and older New Hampshire residents who can’t afford another unfair rate hike on their electric bills. We’ll continue our fight for fair and affordable utility rates as the commission considers this case.”

You can make your voice heard. Share your concerns about the proposed Eversource rate increase at http://action.aarp.org/NHraiseyourvoice.

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