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Senate passes utility reform bill targeting utility companies' response to Tropical Storm Isaias

The House of Representatives late Wednesday passed the bipartisan proposal on a 136-4 vote.
Credit: FOX61

CONNECTICUT, USA — The CT state senate unanimously passed the "Take Back our Grid" Bill Thursday evening on a 35-0 vote.  

The bill now moves to Governor Lamont's desk for signature. 

"We've known for years that Connecticut utilities had significant insufficiencies, a painful lesson we would be forced to relearn with every significant storm that would leave far too many without power for days on end," said Senator Norm Needleman (D-Essex) who is the Senate Chair of the Energy & Technology Committee. "This legislation would significantly change that, putting new regulations in place and better controls on our utilities based on performance. I'm happy that this bill will give financial relief to those who suffer from extended outages and that it will spur further research into renewable energies. Additionally, my first bill filed with the Energy & Technology Committee regarded minimum in-state staffing levels, and I'm ecstatic to see that goal has been realized. This will benefit ratepayers across the state."

The House of Representatives late Wednesday passed the bipartisan proposal, which could ultimately base electric rates on a utility's performance, on a 136-4 vote.

Eversource has faced criticism over its recent rate hikes and the response after the tropical storm. People across Connecticut were left without power for several days. 

The “Take Back Our Grid Act” looks to place limits on energy rate hikes and allows reimbursement to consumers who lose food or medicine due to extended outages. It would require customers to be given a $25 account credit/per day and $250 for any food and medication that spoils during an outage that lasts more than 96 hours (4 days).

The Senate also passed legislation giving election officials more time to process ballots.

Read the bill by clicking here.