The Maine Public Utilities Commission voted Wednesday to launch a new investigation into whether Central Maine Power Co. has been overcharging its customers.
PUC Chairman Mark Vannoy said the vote came in response to a complaint filed by over a dozen CMP customers on May 29. The complaint, led by former state Rep. Herbert Adams, D-Portland, accuses CMP of charging rates that exceed the state limit for the utility’s return on equity. It also alleges that CMP has been deliberately gouging customers to recoup losses from a massive storm in October that caused about 470,000 CMP customers to lose power across the state.
CMP filed a response to the complaint June 8, denying the allegations and requesting that the complaint be dismissed.
On Wednesday, the PUC dismissed the portion of the complaint related to the October storm, but it approved the request for a general rate investigation. It gave CMP an Oct. 15 deadline to file the rate case.
Vannoy said that it is appropriate to revisit CMP’s rates this year, and that the utility’s most recent rate case was in 2014. He noted that the outcome of a rate case is unpredictable and will not necessarily result in lower bills for customers.....................................