Long Island, NY - January 30, 2015 - PSEG Long Island, acting in its capacity as manager of the electric grid, submitted today a three-year rate plan for review by the New York State Department of Public Service (“DPS”). Following review of the rate plan by DPS, approval is required by the Long Island Power Authority’s Board. This much-anticipated filing is the culmination of a year’s worth of planning and careful budgeting.
“After our first year in operation, we dramatically improved our overall customer satisfaction, maintained our system reliability and enhanced our storm response process, all while operating within a rate freeze,” said David Daly, president and chief operating officer of PSEG Long Island. “The rate plan that we proposed will allow us to make further vital improvements to our infrastructure and customer services operation to meet our goal of being a best-in-class electric utility, while delivering on our commitment to long-term rate stability.”
The three-year rate plan requests modest increases of 2 percent of aggregate revenues (customers’ bills) a year for the next three years, which is lower than the projected rate of inflation. This is the equivalent of 3.8 percent, 3.9 percent, and 3.9 percent increases if applied solely to the delivery charge portion of the bill in 2016, 2017 and 2018, respectively. The increase will result in the average residential customer seeing an increase in the monthly bill of approximately $3.25 in 2016 and approximately $3.30 in 2017 and 2018.
Daly continued, “Everyone at PSEG Long Island and the Authority worked diligently over the last twelve months to keep the proposed rate plan at the lowest level possible – to minimize the impact to our customers – while still allowing us to improve on all facets of the business. Last year, we made recommendations to the power planning process that kept significant costs – costs that would have shown up in our customers’ electric bill – out of this rate plan.”
The proposed plan will help provide our customers with a best-in-class electric utility, including investments to:
- Maintain reliable electric service. PSEG Long Island continues to modernize and maintain the grid (Long Island and the Rockaways’ system of power lines and equipment). This work includes targeted replacement of transmission and distribution infrastructure, adding new technology to streamline work management processes, and incorporating more renewable energy and demand-side resources onto the grid.
- Provide best-in-class customer service. PSEG Long Island is continuing to improve customer satisfaction. This year alone, we are rolling out an enhanced web-based portal to help customers manage their accounts on-line, new bill presentment options, including an improved paperless feature, and new credit card payments functionality. We will also continue to build on our new Call Center Technology platform to better serve our customers.
- Improve the storm response and storm preparedness program. PSEG Long Island is raising substations in flood zones to reduce the risk of flooding and resulting power outages. We will also continue to enhance the way we respond to storms, leveraging our new Outage Management System to improve storm logistics and outage coordination.
- Enhance the tree trimming and vegetation management process. PSEG Long Island will continue work to improve grid resiliency by implementing vegetation work specification and technology changes to achieve an industry best-practice program.
Over the past year, PSEG Long Island has made significant improvements to its processes, operations and storm response. Nine of 10 customers surveyed were satisfied with the service they received from PSEG Long Island’s customer call center in the last three quarters. According to J.D. Power, in 2014, PSEG Long Island showed the most improvement in overall customer satisfaction of any large electric provider, anywhere in the nation.
“We’ve accomplished a great deal but we need to invest in infrastructure, maintenance, tree trimming and customer service in order to give the people of Long Island the utility they deserve,” Daly said. “The proposed rate plan allows PSEG Long Island to build on the improvements already made.”
He continued, “Our goal is to have an open and transparent rate planning process. The rate planning process will include public comment sessions throughout the year.”
The dates, times and locations of the public comment sessions will be posted as they are scheduled. For more information on the proposed Rate Plan, click here.