State Sen. Joe Markley (R-Southington) has created an online petition at www.senatormarkley.com where area residents can sound off about electric rate hikes and urge state regulators to fight future hikes. Markley is also pushing for new legislation to put the legislature back into the process of deciding rate increases.
“The signatures on this petition will be delivered to state electricity regulators soon. The message we are sending is clear: We cannot afford higher electricity rates,” said Markley in a press release from his office.
The rate hike could cost the average ratepayer an extra $150 a year, said the news release. Markley’s news release said, “Many lawmakers have been joining with constituents in asking the Public Utility Regulatory Agency to consider the hardships this will create when they make their decision.”
“I am asking regulators to reject this request for a rate hike,” said Markley in the news release. “The burden is already too much for many families and struggling businesses. High energy costs are a problem already for our state economy–this dramatic rate hike would make a bad situation much worse.”
Markley plans to file legislation next month that would require rate hikes in excess of 10 percent come before the General Assembly for approval. “We’ve taken ourselves out of the process, and I’m afraid that’s a mistake,” Markley said in the press release. “I’d like to find a way for us as legislators to protect citizens from back-breaking rate increases.”
Markley said in the release consumers have a choice in their electric supplier. A list of suppliers and their rates can be found at www.energizect.com. Residents can also call 1-877-947-3873 for assistance in picking a supplier.