Connecticut regulators authorize Eversource, United Illuminating to resume service shut-offs
The Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority had banned Eversource and United Illuminating from making service shut-offs more than two years ago at the start of the pandemic. Those may now resume.
However, PURA also told the electricity providers, along with their affiliated natural gas companies, that shut-offs cannot begin until May of 2023.
Eversource told regulators that unpaid bills from hardship customers have increased 38% since the pandemic began. The utilities said the bad debt that accumulates is paid for by all customers.
UI and Eversource added that flexible payment plans are available. An Eversource spokesperson said that customers participating in a payment program are protected from service disconnection.
Advocates told PURA that the flexible payment plans are often unaffordable for those with hardships. That means many low income customers could still end up losing their electric and gas service.