Regulator Removes Utility Logo From Retail Supplier Insert, Extends Compliance Deadline
April 8, 2019 Email This Story Copyright 2010-19 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
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The Connecticut PURA has extended the time by which retail suppliers must include an insert, as part of their welcome package, explaining the Next Cycle Rate (Supply Summary) information on customer bills, and also removed utility logos from the information
The utilities were charged with creating informational inserts explaining the Next Cycle Rate information. In doing so, they included their logos on the inserts
In adopting the utilities' proposed documents, PURA directed that retail suppliers "replicate" the utilities' documents
However, Eversource said that replicating the documents, including the utility logo, could result in suppliers including utility-branded collateral in their correspondence, which Eversource believes could potentially create confusion among customers.
To avoid this outcome, Eversource submitted a revised letter and bill insert, removing the Eversource logo from these documents.
PURA agreed with the removal of the utility logo
"The potential for customer confusion that may result from comingling utility-branded collateral with supplier correspondence was not identified, and therefore not addressed, during the proceeding in this matter. The Authority agrees that consumers may be confused if utility-branded information is included with supplier information and appreciates the Company’s proposal to alleviate this confusion by modifying its collateral," PURA said
PURA also directed UI to remove its logo from the collateral materials
Furthermore, PURA directed that suppliers provide to customers the Supply Summary explanation information on the supplier's letterhead, with the letter stating as follows:
The first page of your electric bill includes important information about your supply rate. We encourage you to regularly review this important information.
This information provides detailed information about your supplier’s rate, the term of your contract and rate, the next cycle rate, any cancellation fee, and a comparison of your supplier charge to the charge you would have incurred at the Standard Service rate. The next cycle rate is meant to show you the rate that you will pay in your next usage period. Refer to the sample bill provided with this Welcome Package.
You can visit EnergizeCT.com to compare supplier rates or find information about returning to Standard Service. Contact the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority at 800-382-4586 with questions or to file a complaint.
Suppliers shall include the revised bill image provided by the utilities, with the logo removed, with such letter in their welcome package.
"[S]uppliers are required to include in the Welcome Package the letter approved [above], and, the sample Eversource non utility-branded bill image approved herein. A similar bill image without utility branding will be developed by UI for use in the supplier Welcome Package. Eversource and UI must work with suppliers to assure they can reproduce the sample bill images," PURA said
To provide time for effective implementation, the Authority will allow suppliers to begin including this information effective July 1, 2019. Previously, the deadline had been May 1