The New Year may prove to be quite costly to customers of the state’s gas and electric utilities. Beginning next Monday, the state Board of Public Utilities kicks off a proceeding to determine how much of the $640 million Jersey Central Power & Light will be able to recover in costs it incurred from the spate of extreme storms that battered New Jersey in the past few years.
The case is separate from another proposal by the state’s second-largest electric utility seeking approval to raise its rates by $31.5 million -- a 1.4 percent boost to the average customer’s bill. JCP&L serves 1 million customers in central and northern New Jersey.
The JCP&L proceeding is the first of several cases to come before the regulatory agency in which the state’s utilities aim to recover more than $1 billion in expenses racked up restoring power and service to their gas and electric customers after Hurricane Sandy and other storms. At the same time, the utilities are being pressed by the Christie administration to invest in their infrastructure to avert the widespread power outages that businesses and homeowners suffered during those storms.
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