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Massachusetts Ends Practice Of Recalculating Energy Bills

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Massachusetts utility regulators have eliminated a rule that required electricity suppliers to recalculate the bills of customers when they switch from their basic service to a competitor.Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Matthew Beaton said Tuesday that lifting the provision will allow ratepayers to save money by switching to a competitive supplier, without facing a retroactive charge.

The recalculation rule was put in place in 2000 when Massachusetts began to encourage competition among suppliers. But it prompted complaints from consumers, some of whom received hefty retroactive electric bills.

In many cases, customers had been paying fixed average monthly bills during the winter months and when they switched they were billed for the actual cost of the electricity they had used.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Jim is WAMC’s Associate News Director and hosts WAMC's flagship news programs: Midday Magazine, Northeast Report and Northeast Report Late Edition. Email: jlevulis@wamc.org