HARTFORD, Conn. — *Editor's Note: The video above aired on May 6.*
Connecticut officials have announced an agreement with Eversource over the electric utility’s response to Tropical Storm Isaias in 2020, which left thousands of people without power for days.
Gov. Ned Lamont's office says that under the deal, Eversource has agreed to return $103.4 million to consumers and be more accountable during future storms.
The funds will be returned to customers in the form of credits on their utility bills, according to Lamont.
“Our focus in this process has been on accountability to the ratepayers of Connecticut,” the governor said. “With this settlement, ratepayers get some well-deserved relief in the short-term, and in the long-term they get more security that something like this won’t happen again. The reforms to CL&P required in this settlement will provide greater local control and oversight of the local utility, and an improved consumer experience for ratepayers.”
Eversource also has agreed not to apply for a rate increase until at least January 2023 and won't appeal a $28.4 million penalty levied by Connecticut regulators, who found the response to Isaias inadequate.
Eversource says the settlement shows its deep commitment to the state.
Officials said in a statement that the company learned valuable lessons as a result of Tropical Storm Isaias and they have made numerous improvements that have changed how they communicate during storms.
"We are intent on winning over hearts and minds in Connecticut by demonstrating our commitment to both customers and Connecticut leadership, at a time when we must work together to deliver a new lean energy future," Eversource added.
“Eversource failed its Connecticut customers and put families at risk after Tropical Storm Isaias. That cannot happen again,” Attorney General Tong said. “This agreement forces significant governance changes at Eversource to bring much needed local control and oversight. This is a powerful agreement, but Eversource still has a lot of work ahead to earn back Connecticut’s trust. I will be watching carefully to ensure every term of this agreement is honored, and that Connecticut families finally receive the safe and reliable service they deserve.”
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