AARP Oklahoma Calls on Oklahoma’s Corporation Commissioners to Enact Moratorium on Utility Rate Increases

Posted on 07/26/22

AARP Oklahoma Corporation Commission Letter.png

On Monday, July 25, AARP Oklahoma sent a letter to Oklahoma’s three elected corporation commissioners calling on them to enact an immediate moratorium on utility rate increases. In the last 12 months, multiple requests have come before the Commission to raise the amount customers will pay monthly for their utilities.

Additionally, it was recently learned that OG&E’s bill increase related to last year’s winter weather will not be $2.12 monthly as represented to the public. Instead, it will be 57% higher, a $3.33 increase. This likely means ONG, PSO and CenterPoint requests will be similarly increased. These increases come in addition to high fuel costs and record-breaking heat, driving increased costs to consumers.  

The letter to Oklahoma Corporation Commissioners highlights the challenges Oklahoma utility customers are facing, including the following impact points – all encountered in less than a year:  

  • OG&E monthly rate increase of $2.07 pending before the Commission  
  • OG&E securitization recoupment represented to be $2.12 monthly has increased to $3.34 monthly 
  • OG&E balance of $150 million under-collected fuel costs, which will likely be sought from customers this fall 
  • PSO securitization recoupment represented to be $4.06 monthly, but the actual amount is unknown  
  • ONG securitization recoupment represented to be $7.82 monthly, but the actual amount is unknown 
  • ONG monthly rate increase of $1.95 monthly pending before the Commission  
  • ONG monthly rate increase of $0.34 approved December 2021  
  • Centerpoint Natural Gas securitization recoupment represented to be $4.36 a month, but the actual amount is unknown 

In light of the mounting financial pressures placed on older Oklahomans, many on fixed incomes, AARP Oklahoma is asking Oklahoma Corporation Commissioners to halt any pending or future rate hike requests. Instead, AARP Oklahoma is asking the commissioners to find ways to provide relief to older loved ones, working families and small businesses who are facing these extreme bill increases.  

“I have watched with dismay as our state’s large investor-owned utilities have treated our hardworking Oklahomans like their own personal piggy bank—all to maintain their significant profits,” said Jim Randall, AARP Oklahoma State Volunteer President. “Seniors, especially those on fixed incomes, are trying to buy food and medicine. Families are figuring out how to afford back-to-school clothes and supplies. Small businesses are facing rising costs and supply shortages. All of these people who are struggling are making sacrifices to make ends meet. It’s time for our large investor-owned utilities to halt the excessive increases and do the same. Enough is enough.” 

 AARP Oklahoma compiled a list of resources for those struggling with soaring utility bills.  Customers can get information about help available from the government, non-profits and utility companies. 

CLICK HERE FOR RESOURCES  

This story is provided by AARP Oklahoma. Visit the AARP Oklahoma page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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