Advertisement
HomeCollectionsUtility Bills
IN THE NEWS

Utility Bills

FEATURED ARTICLES
BUSINESS
Eileen Ambrose | July 11, 2012
No, the Obama Administration is not handing out grants to pay off your utility bills. That's the latest warning from Maryland Attorney General Doug Gansler. This hoax has cropped up in more than a dozen states, including Maryland. Con artists tell consumers that if they pay $1,000 to $1,200, they will get a federal grant deposited in their bank account from the Obama Administration to pay off their utility bills. (That doesn't even sound like a good deal.)  Of course, these con artists try to get consumers' bank account and other personal information.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
May 21, 2014
Regarding Jonathan D. Libber's critique of smart meters ( "BGE Smart Meter fees amount to 'protection money,'" May 19), I think building a "smart grid" is probably a good thing, but I certainly can't applaud the utility's means of going about it. Attempts to sell customers on their supposedly newfound ability to lower utility bills are laughable. We know how to do that now: use less heat and AC, cook during off-hours, do the laundry at 3 a.m. But imposing a penalty for "opting out" is not funny; it's absolutely galling and has no place in the Free State.
Advertisement
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | August 22, 2013
Hoping to help more homeowners lower their utility bills, a Baltimore nonprofit is challenging area neighborhoods to engage in a little friendly competition to see which can get the most home energy retrofits done before winter arrives. Civic Works , which has improved energy efficiency in more than 250 homes over the past two years, launched a new campaign today aimed at getting neighborhoods to vie for recognition as the "greenest" in the metro area by enlisting residents in upgrading insulation and sealing air leaks in their homes, among other improvements.
BUSINESS
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun | May 11, 2014
Dina Kuniken lives in a drafty old house in Baltimore that costs a lot to heat in a normal winter — and this past winter was not normal. Her bill doubled. The nursing assistant was out of work at the time and couldn't afford it. Last month, she scraped together $1,650, got help from the city and Catholic Charities to pay the difference, and finally erased the past-due amount that could have left her and her two children without power. "They got my bill down to zero, and I'm very thankful," said Kuniken, 29. Many are still trying to get to that point.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | February 5, 2013
A bill that would allow a surcharge of up to $2 a month on residential utility bills to pay for new gas pipelines appears to be advancing on a fast track in the General Assembly. The legislation would let the Maryland Public Service Commission grant the surcharge so utilities such as BGE could speed up replacement of aging pipelines. The state Senate gave preliminary approval to the measure Tuesday after a lively debate; the House of Delegates approved it Monday. Final votes on the measure, which appears likely to pass, are expected by the end of the week.
BUSINESS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | February 25, 2014
As part of a strategy to reduce homelessness in Baltimore, the city is teaming up with BGE to eliminate some families' past due utility debt, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced Tuesday. The new initiative, the Power of Home, is available to homeless families and individuals as part of the city's 10-year plan to end homelessness, the Journey Home. Rawlings-Blake said the city is working toward making homelessness in Baltimore rare and brief. "Taking practical steps like resolving past-due utility bills removes a huge barrier that keeps too many families from transitioning from a shelter to permanent housing," the mayor said.
NEWS
By Liz F. Kay and Liz F. Kay,liz.kay@baltsun.com | February 24, 2009
Helen Brierley turned off her heat pump and has been air-drying her dishes. Amina Gauhar hangs her laundry on a clothes rack and even avoids the vacuum cleaner. Both have turned their thermostats way down. But despite efforts to conserve energy, their utility bills - like those of other Maryland residents - have doubled or even tripled during the past few months. As Maryland regulators and utility executives scramble to explain the sticker shock to thousands of angry customers, the Maryland Public Service Commission set up a hearing this week to address the sharp number of complaints.
BUSINESS
By Dan Thanh Dang and Dan Thanh Dang,SUN STAFF | January 7, 2003
At the first sight of snow, Joan Toler heads for the closet. Living without electricity, the 50-year-old retired nurse has to pull on some pantyhose, boots and four sweaters to keep warm. Five blankets help, too. Toler, who drives a taxicab, can't pay the $2,800 that Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. says she owes and she disputes. Her service was cut off Nov. 2. "It's just crazy," said Toler, who says she brings home about $1,200 a month. "I'm freezing." As temperatures drop and fuel bills rise this winter, state agencies and utilities are aggressively seeking families and residents such as Toler who need help paying utility bills.
BUSINESS
By Hanah Cho and Hanah Cho,hanah.cho@baltsun.com | September 8, 2009
The first home Mette Ramanathan and her husband considered buying was a 2,200-square-foot, five-bedroom place. It was too big for the couple, who were interested in space efficiency and lower utility costs. So they settled on a considerably smaller three-bedroom Cape Cod in Baltimore's Hamilton neighborhood. The larger house was "not only expensive but you're using and wasting an awful lot of space," said Ramanathan, who moved in May. "Even if we start a family, we don't need five bedrooms to start a family."
NEWS
August 21, 1991
No, because it doesn't make any difference. The government will still be getting the money from us in the long run. What's the differenceif they lower it one place and jack it up somewhere else? I think they charge too much on taxes. I own a business and have to operate it on the confines of my budget. The government can't just tax when it needs more money. There has to be accountability.
BUSINESS
By Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | February 25, 2014
As part of a strategy to reduce homelessness in Baltimore, the city is teaming up with BGE to eliminate some families' past due utility debt, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced Tuesday. The new initiative, the Power of Home, is available to homeless families and individuals as part of the city's 10-year plan to end homelessness, the Journey Home. Rawlings-Blake said the city is working toward making homelessness in Baltimore rare and brief. "Taking practical steps like resolving past-due utility bills removes a huge barrier that keeps too many families from transitioning from a shelter to permanent housing," the mayor said.
BUSINESS
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun | February 12, 2014
Maryland regulators say they will review the extent that customers are past due on bills to electric and gas utilities, fearing that sharply cold temperatures this winter will get more people into trouble. The state Public Service Commission said it worries about rising arrearages and added that "a broader-than-usual range of residential and commercial customers may be at risk for termination. " "The Commission is aware of the unusually cold weather in December 2013 and January 2014, as well as the recent spike in wholesale gas and electricity prices, and is concerned about how these conditions may be reflected in customer bills, arrearages, and service terminations," the commission wrote in a notice launching the review.
NEWS
Letter to The Aegis | January 28, 2014
Over the past several weeks, I have heard from scores of constituents urging me to support an increase in the federal minimum wage - but none more frequently than Michael O'Hara. Michael is a retired senior citizen who lives in Randallstown. He's never worked for minimum wage in his life. He's collecting a decent pension and once used a hefty inheritance not to pay his rent but to buy the second Corvette Stingray to arrive in Baltimore. Michael bought that Stingray for $5,200 in 1963, when the federal minimum wage, adjusted for inflation, was $8.37.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | August 22, 2013
Hoping to help more homeowners lower their utility bills, a Baltimore nonprofit is challenging area neighborhoods to engage in a little friendly competition to see which can get the most home energy retrofits done before winter arrives. Civic Works , which has improved energy efficiency in more than 250 homes over the past two years, launched a new campaign today aimed at getting neighborhoods to vie for recognition as the "greenest" in the metro area by enlisting residents in upgrading insulation and sealing air leaks in their homes, among other improvements.
NEWS
February 21, 2013
A million residential customers could see an extra few dollars added each month to their utility bills. The General Assembly gave final passage Thursday to a bill to allow two large utilities to impose a surcharge of up to $2 a month on residential customers to speed a program of replacing aging gas pipelines. By a vote of 116-19, the House of Delegates approved the Senate bill, sending the measure to Gov. Martin O'Malley, who has not said whether he will sign it. The legislation would authorize the Public Service Commission to approve the surcharge on the bills of customers of BGE and Washington Gas Light.
NEWS
By Michael Dresser, The Baltimore Sun | February 5, 2013
A bill that would allow a surcharge of up to $2 a month on residential utility bills to pay for new gas pipelines appears to be advancing on a fast track in the General Assembly. The legislation would let the Maryland Public Service Commission grant the surcharge so utilities such as BGE could speed up replacement of aging pipelines. The state Senate gave preliminary approval to the measure Tuesday after a lively debate; the House of Delegates approved it Monday. Final votes on the measure, which appears likely to pass, are expected by the end of the week.
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | January 10, 2012
As Gov. Martin O'Malley prepares to renew his push to build industrial wind turbines off Maryland's coast, a new poll shows strong public support even if the outlook for offshore wind development has grown cloudier lately. The mid-December survey done by OpinionWorks of Annapolis on behalf of a coalition of environmental groups finds that nearly two-thirds of voters statewide favor developing offshore wind power even if it would raise their utility bills by $2 a month. That echoes the finding of an earlier poll in September, in which 62 percent of those asked supported offshore wind.
NEWS
By Scott Calvert and Scott Calvert,scott.calvert@baltsun.com | March 10, 2009
Think your BGE bill is high? Meet the Glaun family of Owings Mills. Their electricity bill last month topped $900. And that was a major improvement over January, when they had to pay a whopping $1,151. "It's quite embarrassing," said Kim Glaun, who says she turns off lights in empty rooms and lowers the thermostat at night. "We feel like there's a big hole in our house." Turns out, their house is full of little holes that appeared last week as purple splotches captured by an infrared camera that "sees" invisible cold pockets - evidence that chilly air is invading a home as warmth escapes.
NEWS
October 15, 2012
Gov. Martin O'Malley did an excellent job appointing a competent and independent Public Service Commission to look at the issues around utility fee structures in Maryland. The PSC sees the whole picture when they review a company's request for a rate increase, and the public relies on them to review the performance and profits of the utility companies - their independence should not be compromised. AARP does not support the recommendations released recently by a work group to allow power companies to add surcharges to utility bills in order to fund reliability and enhancement improvements ("A worthy investment," Oct. 4)
NEWS
August 30, 2012
It was with great interest that I read your article about Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger's office helping people facing foreclosure ("Help comes during foreclosure," Aug. 26). I wonder how many of those facing foreclosure fell behind due to extremely high utility bills. It might interest people to know that in just the six-month period ending June 30, Congressman Ruppersberger received almost $70,000 in contributions from utility companies. Imagine the hundreds of thousands of dollars he has received from them during his 10 years in Congress.
Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.