CMP to Provide Credits to Eligible Customers to Help Alleviate Supplier Price Spikes
$90 one-time account credit will go to income-eligible customers to help offset Standard Offer price increase imposed by companies that supply electricity to Maine utilities
AUGUSTA, ME — February 17, 2022 — Central Maine Power announced today that the company will apply a one-time, $90 credit to the accounts of income-eligible customers to combat the increase in the cost of energy supply that began appearing on some customers’ bills on January 1. The proposal has been approved by the Maine Public Utilities Commission (MPUC).
Energy supply rates reflect the cost of generating electricity and are included in CMP bills each month. However, this is not a CMP rate, and does not benefit the company in any way. CMP remits these funds back to the energy supply companies. While customers may choose their own energy supplier, most opt for the Standard Offer price which is determined annually by a competitive bid process administered by the MPUC and which increased 83% in 2022.
This program was developed with collaboration among CMP, the Maine Office of the Public Advocate, the Governor’s Energy Office, the Consumer Assistance and Safety Division of the MPUC, and Versant Power with support from the Maine State Department of Health and Human Services and MaineHousing.
“For more than 120 years, CMP has been actively involved in our communities and we remain committed to being a good neighbor,” said Joseph Purington, president and CEO of CMP. “Mainers helping Mainers in a time of need is part of our culture. We appreciate the collaboration with the OPA, the Governor’s Energy Office, Versant Power and the CASD to develop this program for Mainers who could use a helping hand, and are grateful to MaineHousing for gaining approval to use federal funds to cover the cost so there is no impact on other customers.”
“Mainers work best when we work together. I am grateful for the support and commitment of CMP and Versant to find a solution for some of Maine’s most vulnerable citizens in developing this program to provide some financial relief from energy bills,” said William Harwood, Public Advocate for Maine. “Along with the expertise of the DHHS, MaineHousing, the Governor’s Energy Office and the Maine Public Utilities Commission, we have been able to discuss and address the unprecedented impacts that global energy prices are having locally on Maine utility customers.”
The one-time credit of $90 will be applied by CMP to customer accounts with no action needed by the customer. Eligible customers have been identified by DHHS as those who are enrolled in SNAP, TANF or MaineCare with a household income at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Level, or who are enrolled in CMP’s Electricity Lifelight Program (“ELP”) by March 15, 2022 for the current program year, or who were enrolled in the Company’s ELP in the previous program year.
In the face of the large increase in the Standard Offer supply rate, CMP has been actively reaching out to customers through email, mail and on social media to ensure customers are aware of payment plan options, tools to manage their energy usage, and sources of bill assistance for those who qualify. Customers may review available options on the CMP website.
“We encourage all customers who are facing challenges in paying their bills to give us a call to discuss an affordable plan and any assistance available,” said Purington.
Maine customers have been able to choose their energy supplier since 2000. The vast majority participate in the default Standard Offer rate which is determined annually through a bid process conducted by the MPUC. This year’s prices reflect the global market price of natural gas and other fossil fuels used to supply energy to the New England grid. Customer may review energy supplier options on the MPUC website.
About CMP: Central Maine Power Company (CMP), a subsidiary of AVANGRID, Inc., is Maine’s largest electricity transmission and distribution utility. Established in 1899 and based in Augusta, Maine, CMP serves approximately 636,000 customers across 346 communities in central and southern Maine. It operates approximately 23,500 miles of distribution lines and 2,900 miles of transmission lines. Over the last decade, the company has invested approximately $3.5 billion in Maine system infrastructure. In 2019, CMP was named Large Business of the Year by the Kennebec Valley United Way. For more information, visit cmpco.com.
About AVANGRID: AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR) aspires to be the leading sustainable energy company in the United States. Headquartered in Orange, CT with approximately $39 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states, AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving more than 3.3 million customers in New York and New England. Avangrid Renewables owns and operates a portfolio of renewable energy generation facilities across the United States. AVANGRID employs approximately 7,000 people and has been recognized by Forbes and Just Capital as one of the 2021 JUST 100 companies - a list of America's best corporate citizens - and was ranked number one within the utility sector for its commitment to the environment and the communities it serves. The company supports the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals and was named among the World’s Most Ethical Companies in 2021 for the third consecutive year by the Ethisphere Institute. For more information, visit avangrid.com.
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