Public hearings for JCP&L’s proposed rate increase started yesterday in Toms River. The Monmouth County hearing is on April 24 at the Freehold Township Municipal Building.
Assemblywomen Caroline Casagrande (R-11) and Amy Handlin (R-13) have already gathered 1300 constituent signatures on a petition opposing the JCP&L rate increase. The petition will be submitted to the Board of the Public Utilities at the Freehold hearing.
“Our constituents are tired of over promises and underperformances by their electric company and we’re going to make sure their voices are heard until JCP&L pulls the plug on this rate hike,” Handlin, R-Monmouth, said. “JCP&L’s customers have already paid the price by suffering through prolonged outages, so our response to their request is a simple and firm, ‘No.’”
Handlin and Casagrande noted their constituent’s outrage with JCP&L’s poor performance in restoring power and keeping families, businesses and communities informed during prolonged outages – most notably Hurricanes Sandy and Irene. The petition also notes the allegation by the N.J. Division of Rate Counsel that the utility is earning too much profit from New Jersey ratepayers to send back to its parent company in Ohio.
“We can say it once, or we can say it a thousand times, the answer is still, ‘No,’” Casagrande, R-Monmouth, said. “Losing power for extended periods of time is a very difficult and costly burden for families and businesses. We have had more than our share of severe outages because JCP&L refused to invest its corporate profits to update its infrastructure and keep the power on in our communities.”
The petition can be signed online here.