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N.Y. says no to rate increases by RG&E, NYSEG

State regulators voted Tuesday to block consideration of rate increases this year for Rochester Gas and Electric Corp. and New York State Electric and Gas Corp. The Public Service Commission, voting unanimously, said the Rochester-based companies hadn't proved that the safety and reliability of their operations were threatened without more money.

ALBANY - State regulators voted Tuesday to block consideration of rate increases this year for Rochester Gas and Electric Corp. and New York State Electric and Gas Corp.

The Public Service Commission, voting unanimously, said the Rochester-based companies hadn't proved that the safety and reliability of their operations were threatened without more money.

PSC Chairman Garry Brown acknowledged that RG&E and NYSEG may have "legitimate financial concerns," but said that wasn't enough for the issue to move forward.

The companies had sought $278 million in higher rates - about 8 percent for electric customers, 9 percent for RG&E natural gas customers and 12 percent for those who buy gas from NYSEG.

James Laurito, chief executive of both companies, said he was disappointed by the decision and warned that their credit ratings might be downgraded, which would increase the companies' borrowing costs.

Their parent company, Energy East, was purchased in September for $4.5 billion by Iberdrola SA of Spain, one of the world's largest utilities. The deal approved by the PSC prevented RG&E and NYSEG from seeking higher rates for at least a year, unless the safety and... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

ALBANY - State regulators voted Tuesday to block consideration of rate increases this year for Rochester Gas and Electric Corp. and New York State Electric and Gas Corp.

The Public Service Commission, voting unanimously, said the Rochester-based companies hadn't proved that the safety and reliability of their operations were threatened without more money.

PSC Chairman Garry Brown acknowledged that RG&E and NYSEG may have "legitimate financial concerns," but said that wasn't enough for the issue to move forward.

The companies had sought $278 million in higher rates - about 8 percent for electric customers, 9 percent for RG&E natural gas customers and 12 percent for those who buy gas from NYSEG.

James Laurito, chief executive of both companies, said he was disappointed by the decision and warned that their credit ratings might be downgraded, which would increase the companies' borrowing costs.

Their parent company, Energy East, was purchased in September for $4.5 billion by Iberdrola SA of Spain, one of the world's largest utilities. The deal approved by the PSC prevented RG&E and NYSEG from seeking higher rates for at least a year, unless the safety and reliability of their systems were threatened.

The companies filed the rate requests four months later.

They are expected to file again for increases in September, when the one-year waiting period is over.


Source: http://www.democratandchron...

APR 8 2009
http://www.windaction.org/posts/19743-n-y-says-no-to-rate-increases-by-rg-e-nyseg
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