Westport First Selectman files testimony and motions for hearings on Eversource
WESTPORT — First Selectman Jim Marpe has filed a motion for participant status on behalf of the town for the public hearing on Eversource’s response to Tropical Storm Isaias.
Marpe has also provided testimony to the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority for its public hearing on Eversource’s rate increase.
While separate topics, both PURA hearings are expected to include discussion on Eversource’s response to the storm — particularly in Westport, a town news release said.
“Eversource must make adjustments to their rate increase calculations to accurately reflect the greater-than-normal electricity demands experienced this calendar year,” Marpe wrote in his testimony. “It would be unfortunate and irresponsible to Evesource to over-collect revenues during this time of financial hardship and fragile public health.”
Marpe said more public transparency was also needed in the process. He said based on Eversource’s pre-COVID proposal, energy usage was less than projected.
“What this says to me is that there is no financial incentive for Eversource to supply energy or promote energy demand,” he said. “They will generate their revenue regardless.”
Marpe said any rate increase PURA allows should directly correlate to improved customer service and a more reliable supply of energy.
“Only then will Eversource be beholden to the public it serves,” he said.
The first PURA hearing took place Monday; the second hearing is not yet scheduled.
“Testimony for the storm’s response hearing is forthcoming and will detail our town’s specific experiences with Eversource during Tropical Storm Isaias,” the news release said.