PSNH rate-hike bid has customer of rival utility expecting trend
That's how Manchester resident Tom Shaughnessy greeted Friday's news that Public Service of New Hampshire plans another rate hike on July 1.
Shaughnessy switched last year to buying electricity from a rival company, North American Power, but he said his electricity costs are still likely to follow's PSNH's.
PSNH said it encountered high energy costs last winter when it had to buy power on the open market.
"The reason it is increasing this year is because of extreme volatility in the regional marketplace as a result of mainly the supply and volatility of natural gas, which the region is increasingly dependent on," Murray said Friday.
"There's probably not a house in Manchester that is more affected by electricity charges than me," he said.
"I went bananas," he said.
Shaughnessy stayed with the company but changed to a plan that caps rates at what PSNH charges. And that's why he expects his electric rate will go up this summer if PSNH's projected increase kicks in on July 1.
PSNH is required to provide a forecast to regulators ahead of its official rate filing to adjust rates effective July 1.
"The numbers could certainly change in June," Murray said.
Murray said a migration of customers away from PSNH to independent suppliers reversed during the winter and the company had to buy energy from the marketplace to fill the demand.
"That requires us to then purchase higher-priced energy from the market to meet demand above and beyond what our more economical power plants produce," he said. "Part of our July 1 adjustment is to recover the incurred cost."