October 22, 2010
Pennsylvania's Public Utility Commission has approved Aqua America Inc.'s plan to issue as much as $143.4 million of long-term, first mortgage bonds to secure tax-exempt bonds that will be issued by the state on the utility's behalf, Aqua said today. The Bryn Mawr-based utility will use proceeds from the state's Economic Development Financing Authority bonds to help finance Aqua's $1 billion multiyear capital improvement plan. The state will issue the bonds in $5,000 denominations.
April 16, 2010 |
Texas pipeline companies have the power of eminent domain, which allows them to site pipelines even over the objection of property owners. Can they do that in Pennsylvania? The short answer: Yes. According to the Public Utility Commission, six pipeline companies are registered in Pennsylvania as utilities, giving them the right to take easements by eminent domain - at a fair-market rate. In January, a Texas company applied to the PUC to build a pipeline in Susquehanna County to serve Marcellus Shale gas wells, which has triggered a full-scale review of the state's policy.
January 15, 2010 |
A proposed $43.2 million water-rate increase sought by Aqua Pennsylvania Inc. will get a full review by the state Public Utility Commission. The PUC voted yesterday to investigate the request, which would add 11.4 percent, or $66, to the annual $579 bill of a typical suburban residence using 50,400 gallons. The commission is expected to take about seven months to consider the increase. Aqua Pennsylvania has 406,000 customers in 27 counties, with a heavy concentration around Philadelphia.
March 18, 2009
WE APPLAUD the Daily News for its strong support of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and this year's extension of the program (editorial, March 3). While the potential for closing the program with money unspent left you scratching your heads, your call for further advocacy from the Public Utility Commission left us scratching ours. For years, the PUC has been a vocal LIHEAP supporter. Even though we have no oversight of its funding or disbursements, the PUC has consistently called for expansion of the program's funding, eligibility requirements and individual grant amounts.
February 6, 2009 |
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission released 93 recommendations yesterday for saving the perennially cash-strapped Philadelphia Gas Works as much as $7.5 million a year, in addition to a onetime savings of $2 million. All the savings could come from supply purchasing and customer service. The city-owned utility said it would fully or partially follow all but two recommendations, which it said were beyond the control of management. One was the elimination of layers of oversight of the utility, which reports to the Philadelphia Gas Commission and Philadelphia Facilities Management Corp.
January 13, 2009 |
DEREGULATION of Pennsylvania's electric rates is scheduled for 2010. This will remove rate caps that have been in place for 10 years. Experts predict that this will increase electric rates to consumers up to 65 percent, with some consumer advocates arguing that the increase will be closer to 100 percent. Some legislators say this could be the biggest tax increase in state history. Years ago, the electric companies promised that deregulation would create increased competition and savings for consumers.
December 26, 2008
THE WARMTH of Christmas will last a while longer, but those of us lucky enough to feel it could also use a reminder of the thousands more who have a hard time finding warmth at any time of the year. Those include -but aren't limited to - the worrisome number of homeless who are perishing on our streets. Over the last year, 85 homeless people have died, more that twice the number just five years ago. And as the merciless economy seeks out more victims, the city is going to be strained to make sure that number doesn't rise.
December 13, 2008 |
A deadly fire blamed on an untended candle has drawn attention to a case last month before the Public Utility Commission that centered on whether a central Pennsylvania power company wrongly cut off electricity to a Dauphin County family. Advocates for Pennsylvania's poor say the case highlights a larger concern, especially in the face of winter and a deep recession: that sharp increases in cutoffs this year by Pennsylvania utilities could lead not only to widespread hardship but also to more tragedies.
August 23, 2008 |
Peco Energy filed a proposal with the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission that would triple its annual aid to low-income natural-gas customers in Philadelphia's Pennsylvania suburbs. The increase in aid to $13.7 million, from $4.3 million, is part of a petition to settle Peco's March request for its first rate increase for distributing natural gas in 20 years. If the settlement is approved by the PUC, it would take effect Jan. 1 and add $10.83, or 7.6 percent, to the average monthly residential bill of $141.
June 3, 2008 |
State utility regulators complained yesterday to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that its new approach to meeting long-term electricity demand was too expensive. The system will cost Pennsylvania users $5 billion too much during the next three years, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission said. The PUC was joined in the complaint by the utility commissions in New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland, and by consumer advocates. The new program, called the "Reliability Pricing Model," changed the way electricity auctions are conducted by PJM Interconnection L.L.C.