Massachusetts AG: Residential Customers On Retail Supply Paid $76 Million More Than Default Service From July 2017 to June 2018 (New Report)
Says Shopping Low-Income Customers Pay 25% Higher Rates
August 1, 2019 Email This Story Copyright 2010-19 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • email@example.com
The following story is brought free of charge to readers byEC Infosystems, the exclusive EDI provider of EnergyChoiceMatters.com
A report released today by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey says that Massachusetts individual residential electric customers who switched to a competitive electric supplier paid $76.2 million more than if they would have remained with default service during the one-year period from July 2017 to June 2018.
"This new data brings the total net losses to $253 million for Massachusetts customers over the course of three years (July 2015 – June 2018)," the AG's office said
"The AG’s report also showed that low-income residents and communities of color are disproportionately impacted," the AG's office said
AG Healey renewed her call to stop these companies from making direct solicitations to residential customers.
"The results of our new report highlight the need for legislation to protect real competition and stop these predatory companies from scamming residents in Massachusetts," AG Healey said
"Low-income households participate in the individual residential electric supply market at twice the rate of non-low-income households, and on average pay rates that are 25 percent higher. The new report found that low-income households lost an average of $166 in the one-year period from 2017–2018," the AG's office said
"In the last four years, residents in Massachusetts filed more than 1,000 complaints with the AG’s Office about competitive suppliers engaging in aggressive and deceptive tactics. Complaints include suppliers pretending to be a utility company to induce customers to turn over sensitive information; suppliers harassing customers with repeated calls or home visits; and door-to-door salespeople forcing their way into elderly customers’ homes and refusing to leave without a signed contract," the AG's office said
In January, AG Healey filed legislation that would ban suppliers from contracting directly with residential customers for new contracts after Jan. 1, 2020. The legislation would not affect opt-out municipal aggregation or commercial and industrial electric supply.
As of 2019, over 120 cities and towns in Massachusetts provide electricity to their residents through municipal aggregation programs. Dozens more are in the process of setting up municipal aggregation programs -- including Boston and Worcester