Nov 2, 2013
06:20 AM
The Connecticut Story

Connecticut Attorney General Seeks to Limit What CL&P Gets from Customers for Big Storm Costs

Connecticut Attorney General Seeks to Limit What CL&P Gets from Customers for Big Storm Costs

A Coast Electric Power Association lineman grounds a line on a replacement pole in McNeill, Miss., Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012. The Christmas day storms downed both telephone and electric power lines and poles throughout the state in addition to extensive private property damage. More than 25 people were injured and at least 70 homes were damaged in Mississippi by the severe storms that pushed across the South on Christmas Day, authorities said Wednesday. Damages have been reported in 10 counties and officials continue to assess the situation. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen Friday urged state utility regulators to significantly reduce the $414 million that Connecticut Light & Power has asked to recover from ratepayers as a result of money it spent on repairs following storms in 2011 and 2012.

Jepsen asked the state Public Utilities Regulatory Authority in a legal brief to disallow at least $90 million in storm-related costs. Jepsen said some of the costs CL&P wants to recover are improper or unjustified, and that reducing the amount the company can get from ratepayers will serve as a penalty for the company’s inadequate response to Tropical Storm Irene and the October 2011 nor’easter.

CL&P also is looking to recover costs associated with Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Jepsen filed his brief in a case before PURA that started with a filing that the utility company made in March of this year.

“Utility companies are, by law, allowed to recover reasonable expenses for major storm response,” Jepsen said in a statement. “However, I believe CL&P’s petition to PURA includes a number of expenses that should not be recovered from ratepayers. Further, I believe the evidence presented in these proceedings shows that, in a number of instances, CL&P did not take adequate steps to protect its ratepayers; CL&P should treat its ratepayers as a last, rather than a first, resort for its storm-related costs.”

Tricia Taskey Modifica, a company spokeswoman, said CL&P officials disagree with the attorney general’s claims.

“These were unprecedented storms that caused historic damage which was costly to repair,” she said. “It’s also important to remember that storm recovery costs have already been reduced for our customers by $40 million as a direct benefit of our merger agreement (with Boston-based NStar).”

PURA is expected to issued a tentative ruling in the case by the end of December.

See the full story at the New Haven Register online.


Connecticut Attorney General Seeks to Limit What CL&P Gets from Customers for Big Storm Costs

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