ALBANY — Your Con Ed bill is going up.
The state’s top public utility regulator approved rate hikes for all Con Edison customers across the five boroughs and in Westchester on Thursday. Customer bills will increase by $1.2 billion over the next three years, thanks to the measure approved by the Public Service Commission.
Within the first year, monthly residential gas bills will go up 8.8 percent, or on average $14.44. Monthly electric bills will balloon 4.7 percent, or $6.37 on average.
The PSC branded the proposal as “reasonable,” defending the measure as the next best option compared to Con Edison’s original, higher rate hike request.
The rate increases “will allow the Company to replace aging infrastructure and to modernize its systems and help the State meets its conservation and energy policy goals,” while providing “safe and reliable service,” the utility regulator wrote.
Even New York City signed off on the plan to increase customer costs, despite acknowledging major complications city residents experienced last summer with days-long, borough-city blackouts.
Mark Chambers, director of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Office of Sustainability, wrote in Oct. 2019 that the city had concerns over the “magnitude” of the increases and how they would burden residents.
Customers will also be on the hook for $240 million owed to the Metropolitan Transit Authority for electrical repairs dating back to the 2017 “summer of hell” in the subway system— blamed on Con Ed’s power failures.
Customers will have to fork over $39 million to subsidize Con Ed’s electric vehicle charging station program — which the PSC said works well with state environmental goals to reduce emissions.
But consumer groups like AARP slammed the increases as just another burden for New Yorkers, pegging Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
“New York State has an energy affordability problem, and today it got worse,” said Beth Finkel, director of AARP, a group that advocates for senior citizens’ rights.
“AARP was hoping Governor Cuomo would weigh in as he has in the past when Con Ed ratepayers and other New Yorkers have faced a massive hit like this to their wallets, but he said nothing — very disappointing.”
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