The Heat Is on Summer Electric Bills

The 2014 summer cooling season is turning into an expensive and potentially unsafe one for older consumers who live on a fixed income. Though many welcome the heat after a harsh winter, the frigid temperatures of this past winter are causing higher electric bills this summer. Consumers hoping to escape the high utility bills they faced during winter will find little relief. A colder-than-normal winter triggered record demand for natural gas to meet home heating needs. As a result, natural gas reserves …

Spotlight: New Jerseyans Fight Back – and Win Against Higher Utility Bills

This is a true story of how New Jerseyans fought back against the largest proposed utility rate increase by the state’s biggest gas and electric company in its century-long history – and won. Just last week, consumer advocates – including AARP – reached a settlement on “Energy Strong,” a PSE&G proposal to harden its electric and gas systems following the tragedy of Superstorm Sandy. The settlement saves New Jersey utility customers $1.6 billion.  A culmination of a more than a …

Impact of the Polar Vortex on Consumers Will Linger

Many consumers are happy to say goodbye to the polar vortex that caused frigid temperatures and high home heating bills this past winter. While the memory of bitter cold winter days will fade as warmer weather finally begins to take hold, the ghost of the polar vortex may return in the form of higher home energy prices for the remainder of the year. The onslaught of colder-than-normal temperatures resulted in higher-than-average natural gas demand for home heating. This high demand has …

$900 Million and Counting

Have you ever been hit with sticker shock when you open your utility bill? This winter, many Americans faced skyrocketing energy costs, with bills doubling and tripling in just a month. Meanwhile, some seniors on fixed incomes still have to make tough choices between paying their utility bill or buying other necessities like food and medication. That’s why AARP is fighting, in states across the country, for fair and reasonable utility rates. We’re off to a strong start in 2014, …

4 More Wins – For You

Over the last two years, AARP has saved consumers an estimated $3 billion on their utility bills, protected reliable phone service and fought for stronger consumer protections for all Americans – all as part of our multistate utilities campaign.  And, we’re not stopping there. 4 More Wins for Consumers: As recently highlighted in the New York Times, AARP South Carolina volunteers raised their voices in opposition to Duke Energy’s request for a rate increase that would have increased yearly bills …

One Public Service Commission Puts Excessive Profits before People

Remember Paula Wood, the retired, single Alabamian struggling to pay her electric bills? While there has been some good news, things in Alabama aren’t looking a whole lot better. In early July the Public Service Commission (PSC) voted to lower the profit (return on equity) that Mobile Gas is allowed to earn from 13.45% to 10.95%.  While the decision is complicated, this will initially help save consumers like Paula money. The rates for Mobile Gas customers will go down, but, …