Governor Wolf Commends PUC for Helping Low Income Pennsylvanians
September 20, 2019
Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Wolf commended the steps taken by the Pennsylvania Utility Commission (PUC) to revise two of its energy affordability programs to better assist the commonwealth’s most vulnerable households.
“I applaud the PUC’s effort to tackle the extremely high costs facing the poorest households in the state,” said Gov. Wolf. “The actions taken are critical in helping to remove barriers for our low-income residents in areas all across Pennsylvania.”
Yesterday, the PUC advanced two proposals to assist low-income households’ access to affordable utility services, including changes to the Customer Assistance Programs (CAPs). The changes include lowering maximum “energy burden” thresholds for low-income individuals and families, which is the percentage of household income spent on energy usage, such as heat and light.
Additionally, the PUC will move forward with updates to the Universal Service and Energy Conservation Programs (USECPs) to emphasize the Commission’s mandate to “continue the protections, policies and services that now assist customers who are low-income to afford utility service.”
The amendments adopted by the PUC include a six percent maximum energy burden for the most vulnerable customers, noting that a household with an annual income of $10,000 could potentially save an average of $1,000 annually on electric and gas service.
“One of our most basic responsibilities in government is to help ensure that everyone has access to utilities, no matter what your socioeconomic status is,” said Gov. Wolf. “These actions will have a meaningful influence on nearly a million households in need of energy assistance today, and countless more in the future.”