Hartford, CT - Sen. Tony Hwang encouraged the public to share their thoughts on "A Better Way to Energy Affordability", the Connecticut Republicans' comprehensive package of policy proposals to reduce the cost of electric bills and make energy more affordable over the long term.
"These thoughtful policy solutions will produce real, meaningful savings for ratepayers in both the near term and over the long haul," said Sen. Hwang, who is a Chief Deputy Republican Leader and a former Vice-Chair on the legislature's Energy & Technology Committee. "The dialogue has begun in earnest. People are hurting. Their bills are ridiculously high. They need relief as soon as we can possibly deliver it. This has got to be our top priority."
The policies will reduce energy costs for Connecticut families by over $362 million per year, saving the average household over $210 next year. In the long run, the plan will drive down costs by even more and implement important ratepayer protections against utilities.
"Ratepayers deserve a more amplified voice," Sen. Hwang said. “They deserve answers as to what they are paying for. They are angry, and they want action."
Sen. Hwang recently wrote an op-ed highlighting the need to make bipartisan energy utility cost reforms.
"I want to hear from ratepayers," Sen. Hwang said. "Tell me what you think of this set of common sense solutions. I will continue to fight for the best interests of all ratepayers. We have a real opportunity to inject affordability and transparency into our energy bills. We need to seize it in bipartisan fashion."
The proposals detailed by Senate and House Republicans include:
- Moving charges resulting from public policy decisions from ratepayer bills to the state budget. (estimated savings: $362 million annually)
- Bringing all clean energy sources into the state's green energy strategy by adding nuclear power and all sources of hydro power to the state's Renewable Portfolio Standard program.
- Improving the Standard Service Procurement process by examining the differing ways CT's large utilities, small municipal owned utilities, and other states all procure power.
- Restoring independence to utility rate regulators by separating the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
- Giving PURA more discretion and flexibility in decoupling to protect ratepayers.
- Establishing utility rate case oversight to ensure that resolutions of rate cases and settlements are made in the best interest of ratepayers and not for other political considerations.
Sen. Hwang encouraged the public to sign up for his Capitol updates at SenatorHwang.com.
Sen. Hwang represents Bethel, Easton, Fairfield, Newtown and Sandy Hook.