May 18, 2015 |
Four years into Pennsylvania's much-heralded Era of Electric Choice, it's time to assess. Is it worth switching electricity suppliers? Maybe. Picking plans and suppliers is a gamble, as many discovered, to their dismay, during last year's chilling polar vortex. Since then, the state Public Utility Commission has toughened the rules, to make it harder for shady operators. But never underestimate the creativity of dishonest people. If you follow a few simple rules and filter out most of the noise, I've discovered, there are ways to achieve tortoise-like savings, without much sweat.
April 4, 1990 |
The customers were three deep as they placed orders at the Strictly Kosher Meat Market on Marlton Pike in Cherry Hill. Agnes Lieberman waited on customers while her husband, Sam, packaged meat in the rear of the store. Katherine Vocci, an employee, took telephone orders. One customer, a middle-aged woman, brought an armload of flowers into the market and put them on a counter. "Happy spring," the woman said, smiling at Agnes Lieberman. The first 10 days of April are the busiest of the year for the Liebermans.
December 31, 1989 |
John Young didn't want to work Christmas Day and he is not eager to work tomorrow, but as a home heating oil supplier during a record-setting cold spell, he probably will. "I'm like everybody else. I'd like time off," said Young, who owns Martin Fuel Co., 2521 Orthodox St. "But if the weather calls for it, we'll be here. " The same story was heard from other suppliers serving the city's Northeast. Unseasonably cold weather has sent them scurrying to meet consumers' increasing demand for increasingly costly heating oil. A spot check of prices showed suppliers were charging residential customers about $1.25 a gallon on Tuesday, up between 26 cents and 43 cents just in the last month.
December 18, 2012
Pennsylvania has more retail electricity suppliers than any other state, according to an industry organization that assesses competitive power markets. The Annual Baseline Assessment of Choice in Canada and the United States counted 47 retail suppliers in Pennsylvania, and ranked the state second overall behind Texas, the most active market in the country. The report commended the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission for constructing market rules that encourage competition. More than 1.9 million Pennsylvania customers - 34 percent - have switched suppliers, according to the PUC's website, www.papowerswitch.com . - Andrew Maykuth
January 23, 2013 |
BENTONVILLE, Ark. - Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has alerted its global suppliers that it will immediately drop them if they subcontract their work to factories that have not been authorized by the discounter. Wal-Mart's stricter measure, along with other changes to its policy, comes amid increasing calls for better safety oversight after a deadly fire at a Bangladesh factory that supplied clothing to Wal-Mart and other retailers. The fire in late November killed 112 workers at a factory owned by Tazreen Fashions Ltd. Wal-Mart has said the factory wasn't authorized to make its clothes.
July 19, 2011 |
An association of competitive electrical suppliers launched a campaign Monday to educate consumers about choosing power suppliers, including how to recognize some of the shady sales tactics that have given the industry a black eye. The Retail Energy Supply Association (RESA) unveiled a four-page consumer-education guide , an effort to sell a skeptical public on the virtues of giving up regulated utilities. "We're taking more of a leadership role in trying to facilitate the education of consumers about customer choice," David Fein, the group's president, said in a media conference call.
July 30, 1987 |
Sid F. Gitterman, the man with nine natural funny faces, is wearing a frown. "This is no laughing matter," said Gitterman, referring to missing street signs at 4th and Vine. "It's a comedy of errors that isn't funny at all. " In May, Gitterman's family opened SUJi designs, an upscale dress distribution firm in an Old City warehouse at 408 Vine St. "Very old warehouse, too - it was built in 1873," quipped Gitterman. But the street identification signs down the block read 4th Street and York Avenue.
February 14, 1994 |
The secret of operating a successful fish market is to cultivate rapport with suppliers, says Bernard Grogan, president of Hill's Quality Seafood Markets chain. "My suppliers know that I will return a shipment if it's not perfect," Grogan said. "But it takes years to build up a good trusting relationship with them. " Grogan, 40, started in the fish business at age 12, when he tagged along with his father to work in a fish market operated by an aunt and uncle in Ardmore. His father also was a fish manager for the old Penn Fruit supermarket chain.
February 15, 2013
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission on Thursday adopted new rules governing competitive electric markets that it hopes will encourage suppliers to provide more innovative products and will make it easier for customers to switch suppliers. Most of the changes brought about by the new framework will be invisible to customers. But the rules should reduce the frustrating administrative delays that required some customers to wait up to 45 days to switch suppliers. The new rules will shorten the waiting period and by 2015 should allow for instantaneous conversions.
April 23, 2016 |
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission finalized regulation changes Thursday that will require retail natural-gas suppliers to display key contractual terms and conditions more clearly for customers and to provide more timely information on "contract renewal" and "change in terms" notices. The regulations must be reviewed by the Independent Regulatory Review Commission, the state Attorney General's Office, the state Senate Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure Committee, and the state House Consumer Affairs Committee before going into effect.