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NYSEG & RG&E Face Millions in Penalties for Customer Service Failures


The New York State Public Service Commission on Thursday received an update from Department of Public Service staff on multiple New York electric, gas, and water utilities’ failure to achieve their annual customer service performance target for 2023. Utility failure to meet these targets results in financial penalties or negative revenue adjustments (NRAs) which reduce a utility’s return on equity and are automatically credited to customers under each utility’s respective rate plan or deferred until the next rate case. No Commission action is required because these financial offsets are self-actuating. Collectively, the penalties or NRAs amounted to $23.5 million for customer service performance measure failures in 2023.

Each of the following utilities failed to meet at least one of their customer service performance metrics: New York State Electric & Gas Corporation and Rochester Gas and Electric Corporation each failed to meet all four of their respective metrics, resulting in NRAs of $11.4 million and $7.1 million, respectively.  Liberty Utilities d/b/a St. Lawrence Gas failed to meet its Customer Satisfaction Survey metric, resulting in an NRA of $39,000; Niagara Mohawk Power Corp. d/b/a National Grid failed to meet its small/medium commercial and industrial customer satisfaction survey metric, resulting in an NRA of $1.2 million; Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation failed to meet all three of its customer service metrics, resulting in an NRA of $3.8 million.

“Our Office of Consumer Services staff conducted an in-depth review of the utilities’ successes or failures in meeting their respective customer service performance measures filed as required by each utility’s respective rate plan,” said Commission Chair Rory M. Christian. “Ensuring that the utilities operating in New York State maintain good customer service is a top priority for the Commission. The negative rate adjustments being announced today are company financial enforcement payments for missing specified customer service metrics.

According to the PSC, the importance of maintaining good customer service for utilities cannot be overstated. Utilities exist to serve customers and the services they provide are vital to public health and welfare, and to our economy. If the company fails to maintain good customer service, the Commission-approved customer service performance targets will activate to ensure the utilities receive powerful market signals to improve their behavior.

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