Texas Governor Addresses Skyrocketing Energy Bills
Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced Sunday that he is working with members of the legislature to address “skyrocketing” energy bills that resulted from a temporary spike in the energy market.
The governor said they are working quickly to calculate the total cost of these bills and find ways that the state can help “reduce this burden”. The governor noted that the Public Utility Commission has issued a moratorium on customer disconnections for non-payment and will temporarily restrict providers from issuing invoices.
“This pause will ensure that the state has time to address these bills and develop a solution for Texans,” Abbott’s office said in a statement posted on the governor’s website.
On February 19, the Texas Railroad Commission (RRC) said it was keeping tabs on the potential for hikes in gas bills and outlined that it was working with utilities, consumer groups and others to avoid situations where customers may get unusually high bills in the coming weeks.
“As Texans recover from the devastating effects of Winter Storm Uri, I am committed to utilizing all of the tools available to this agency to assist in the coming weeks,” RRC Chairman Christi Craddick said in an organization statement.
“The Railroad Commission will be exploring all options in order to reduce the financial burden on Texans as we tackle the challenges that lie ahead together,” Craddick added.
Commenting on the matter, commissioner Wayne Christian said, “Texans have gone through enough hardship during this winter storm without having to worry about unexpected additional energy costs”.
“Our agency will do everything in our power to ensure utilities have plenty of time to get caught up on these unexpected expenses, so consumers are not unduly burdened,” he added.
The RRC highlighted that utilities have been purchasing gas to deliver to customers in a commodities market in which prices “dramatically increased” due to the “extremely high demand” brought on by the prolonged storm.
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