Comments of the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research on PC47 –
a study on the advisability of establishing an opt-in electric affordability program
Submitted to the Maryland Public Service Commission regarding Public Conference 47
January 19, 2017
In 2016, the Maryland Public Service Commission commissioned a study regarding “the advisability of establishing an opt-in electric affordability program for residential and small business customers.” The study, done by Gabel Associates, examined approaches that could improve affordability for low-income households through fixed-price contracts for electricity in place of Standard Offer Service (SOS).
The Study did not recommend a statewide opt-in program for all residential and small business customers, such as the one that began to be implemented in Delaware in 2016. Rather, one of its principal recommendations was that the PSC consider and address “affordability initiatives for low-income customers.” This recommendation is crucial in light of the widespread recognition that existing heating and electricity bill payment assistance programs “are not a long-term affordability solution” even though they provide considerable relief by lowering energy burdens.
Read the full comments (pdf).
Also see Energy Justice in Maryland’s Residential and Renewable Energy Sectors. (October 2015)