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Pa. utility regulator investigating incorrect PPL bills

  • Rachel McDevitt
Utility terminations resumed April 1, 2021.

Allyson Ruggieri / WESA

Utility terminations resumed April 1, 2021.

Pennsylvania’s utility regulator is looking into why an electric company overcharged some customers on recent bills.

The Public Utility Commissions says it is investigating the accuracy and integrity of PPL Electric Utilities’s billing practices after customers complained of unexpectedly high bills.

PPL says a technical problem meant it wasn’t getting correct data on how much electricity customers used between late December and early January. It used estimates based on past usage to determine bills.

Those bills left some customers shocked.

Nathan Lund of Dauphin County shared screenshots of his PPL account that show his energy use increased less than 50% last month compared to January 2022, but his bill nearly quadrupled.

PPL says the technical issue is fixed. It is waiving late fees through March and correcting bills.

Energy prices climbed over the last year, in part due to increased global demand.

The price of natural gas in Pennsylvania–which makes up the largest share of power generation in the state–nearly doubled between the fall of 2021 and the fall of 2022.

But, even that price increase did not account for the higher estimated bills in all cases. PPL says the increase in fuel prices translates to about a $50 increase for a household that uses 1,000 kilowatt hours per month.

PPL says no customers were at risk of an electricity shut off.

People who have outstanding issues with PPL can contact the PUC’s Bureau of Consumer Services at 1-800-692-7380.

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