The Energy and Technology Committee Chairs are at odds about what to do with skyrocketing electric rates and consumer groups like “Fight the Hike” are frustrated with the lack of legislative action.
“Fight the Hike” rallied outside the Legislative Office Building Thursday to call for action.
“They caused it, they can fix,” Frank DeMatteis of Hamden said. DeMatteis advocated for re-regulation of the electricity market, which the state deregulated in the late 1990s.
Heiwa Salovitz of New Haven said “We’re not against public utilities making a profit. We’re against them making an obscene profit.” He said the recent rate hikes hit the poorest people the hardest.
State Sen. Ed Meyer, D-Guilford, said legislators get more phone calls about this issue than any other issue facing the state and he was surprised that he was the only lawmaker at the rally Thursday.
Meyer said last summer lawmakers saw this crisis approaching and knew it was about to get worse, but did nothing to address it.
As for the two different bills before the legislature, Meyer said “they’re like ships passing in the night.” He said there’s uncertainty about how the legislature should move forward because the two chairman, Rep. Steve Fontana, D-North Haven, and Sen. John Fonfara, D-Hartford, are at odds over how to accomplish rate relief.
“Good leadership says get the job done,” Meyer told consumer advocates.
But groups like CT Citizens Action Group aren’t confident the legislature has enough time to address the issue.
Earlier this week Tom Swan said the legislature should have a special session just to address the issue of energy policy.