The New York State Department of Public Service (DPS) announced in late December that it had opened an investigation into billing errors by New York State Electric & Gas (NYSEG) and Rochester Gas & Electric Corporation (RG&E), and DPS is hosting a series of the public forums starting this week.
Virtual and in-person public forums will allow DPS to “receive public comments on alleged late or erroneous billing, late or inaccurate meter readings, and customer service issues affecting customers of the two utilities.”
“DPS staff have observed a significant increase in complaints against the companies and a deterioration in the companies’ customer service KPIs in 2022, and particularly since August 2022,” the agency says. “These problems were exacerbated by the inability of customers to reach the companies’ customer service representatives by phone without significant delay.”
According to DPS, “Public forums will be held in front of DPS employees to receive comments on billing, meter reading and customer service issues affecting customers of the companies since 2022 as follows:”
DATE: Tuesday, January 31, 2023 TIME: 1:00 p.m
Electronic Access: www.webex.com Event Number: 2343 229 4895 Event Code: January 31 through 1 p.m
Phone Access Only: 518-549-0500 Access Code: 2343 229 4895
DATE: Tuesday, January 31, 2023 TIME: 6:00 p.m
Electronic Access: www.webex.com Event Number: 2333 158 8627 Event Code: January 31 through 6 p.m
Phone Access Only: 518-549-0500 Access Code: 2333 158 8627
Date: Wednesday, February 1, 2023 Time: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m
5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m
Location: Heritage Hills Society 8 Heritage Hills Drive
Somers, New York 10589
Date: Tuesday, February 7, 2023 Time: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m
Location: Council Chambers of Rochester City Hall
30 St. Rochester Church, NY 14614
Date: Wednesday, February 8, 2023 Time: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m
Location: Binghamton State Office Building First floor conference room
44 Hawley St Binghamton, NY 13901
DPS staff and the DPS Consumer Advocate are soliciting public comment on the following questions:
- Have you received invoices late or not received for a longer period of time (e.g. more than a month)?
- If you haven’t received an invoice for a month or more, how long did it take to receive an invoice and may you have received more than one “catch up” invoice?
- If you called your utility to inquire as to why you did not receive a bill, your utility provided you with timely, accurate, and reasonable information as to why you did not receive your bill(s) and when normal billing would resume will?
- If you are a customer procuring renewable energy services from a Community Distributed Generation (CDG), have you had issues with receiving bills, credits, or with inaccurate, late, or non-existent credits and billing reconciliations?
- If you’re a solar panel or other form of renewable energy customer, have you had issues with receiving invoices, credit notes, or inaccurate, late, or non-existent credit notes and bill reconciliations? Or did you have problems with the demand measurement?
- If you receive utility services through an Energy Services Company (ESCO), have you had trouble receiving bills, credit notes, or inaccurate, late, or non-existent credit notes and billing reconciliations?
“This list is not exhaustive and comments can be made on other issues related to the companies’ performance,” says DPS. “Please do not submit personalized complaints publicly in a public forum so that you do not inadvertently disclose sensitive personal information.”
Anyone wishing to comment on the recording in the Virtual Forums must pre-register no later than Monday morning by visiting www.webex.com, clicking Join a Meeting, entering the event number for the desired session, and the requested information; or by calling 1-800-342-3330.
In addition to these forums, DPS employees and the DPS Consumer Advocate solicit public comments through DPS’ toll-free Opinion Hotline at 1-800-335-2120 or by US mail and through other channels:
For those who cannot participate in a public forum or prefer not to speak, there are several other ways to submit your comments. Comments should refer to Matter 23-00068, NYSEG/RG&E Billing Investigation.
By web or mail: The Department of Public Service will launch a special comment form on www.dps.ny.gov by January 31, 2023. Alternatively, comments may be directed to the Hon. Michelle L. Phillips, Secretary, New York State Department of Public Service, 3 Empire State Plaza, Albany, New York 12223-1350. All written comments will become part of the records being reviewed by the Commission on the matter and can be found on the Department’s website on matter 23-00068.
Toll-Free Opinion Line: Comments may be submitted by calling the Department of Public Service Opinion Line at 1-800-335-2120. This number is designed to receive 24 hour commentary on pending matters from state callers. These comments are not reproduced verbatim, but a summary is provided to the Commission.
Filing a Consumer Complaint
If you wish to make a complaint about your utility service, you can contact DPS at www.dps.ny.gov/complaints, 1-800-342-3377 (Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.) or by writing to Office of Consumer Services, 3 Empire State Plaza, 4th Floor, Albany, New York 12223. Please include as much information as possible with your complaint.
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