Posted on November 2, 2021
The Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) recently approved Eversource’s Settlement Agreement in response to an investigation into the company’s storm-related performance.
I’m encouraged by this news, and as we enter into the winter season I remain hopeful that Eversource will continue to improve their services and storm-related response moving forward.
The settlement agreement consists of the following elements:
- $65 million in direct bill credits to Eversource customers to be distributed in December and January.
- $10 million in customer assistance. PURA will exercise its discretion to allocate funds in a way that provides the greatest financial benefit to both hardship and non-hardship customers carrying arrearages in support of COVID 19 payment plan.
- Eversource agrees to withdraw its appeal of the $28.4 million penalty for its deficient tropical storm Isaias response and will continue to pay that as a monthly credit to customers through August 31, 2022.
- The parties agree to forgo the interim rate decrease contemplated in the “Take Back the Grid” Act and the $135 million Rate on Equity (ROE) reductions ordered in the Authority’s Storm Isaias Decision.
- Freeze base distribution rates until 2024.
- Reopen the Waterbury Service center to permanent staffing of overhead and underground line resources.
- Eversource recognizes the need to hire and train additional line workers support personnel for blue sky operations and storm response (expected to be addressed in another docket).
- A commitment and acknowledgement from Eversource that its corporate governance needs meaningful reform to promote local control.
- Enhancements to provide greater local control:
- Eversource will create an executive position for a new President dedicated solely to electric operations in the state of CT who shall report directly to the Chief Operating Officer of Eversource
- Eversource will retain at least one CT resident as an independent member on the Eversource Board of Trustees
- Eversource will expand its Board of Directors from 4 to 7 members to include three independent directors, at least two of whom shall be domiciled in CT
Eversource agrees to host semi-annual meeting for industrial and large commercial customers to answer questions and discuss developments at Eversource.