National Grid Set to Increase Rates By Up to 28% in Massachusetts
Massachusetts residents are yet again to brace for higher electric and natural gas prices as the year 2020 wraps up.
National Grid, one of the largest utility companies in the Northeast, has submitted proposals for increasing the standard tariff offers (also known as the Price to Compare) from November 1, 2020, through April 30, 2021, for both residential and commercial customers.
The tariffed rate for residential customers is set to increase by an astounding 25%, from 9.898 cents per kWh to 12.388 cents per kWh. Commercial customers will see the standard tariff rates increase from 8.428 cents per kWh to 10.763 cents per kWh, nearly a 28% hike.
Customers who would like to avoid paying the higher price have the opportunity to switch their electric supply to a retail electric provider (REP), thanks to the deregulated energy industry in Massachusetts.
The average electricity prices in Massachusetts have been steadily rising since 2014. Despite using relatively small amounts of energy (8th lowest usage in the US), Massachusetts residents pay approximately 7 cents / kWh more for electricity, than is the national average.
According to the utility company, the additional revenue from the increased rate is to pay for energy affordability programs, support economic development programs, and invest in energy efficiency initiatives and programs that help customers manage usage.
National Grid provides electricity and gas to ten million customers in New York, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island. The company spokesman said that the company initially planned to file the rate hikes in April 2020 but delayed the submission because of the COVID-19 pandemic.