HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued for comment settlement agreements with two companies - American Power & Gas of Pennsylvania LLC (AP&G) and Residents Energy LLC (Residents) - following informal investigations into the companies’ marketing and sales practices as licensed electric generation suppliers (EGSs) in Pennsylvania.
The Commission voted 5-0 to issue for comment both proposed joint settlement petitions between each company and the PUC’s independent Bureau of Investigation & Enforcement (I&E). Interested parties have 20 days to file comments on either or both proposed settlements. Instructions on how to file comments are contained in the Commission’s Orders regarding the AP&G settlement and the Residents Energy settlement.
I&E began an informal investigation of AP&G after allegations that the company misrepresented its status as an EGS and its purpose, speaking to individuals who lacked authority to enroll customer accounts, and engaging in improper marketing practices. Terms of the proposed settlement include, but are not limited to, AP&G paying a civil penalty of $30,000 and ensuring that its training programs for sales representatives remain compliant with state regulations.
I&E’s investigation of Residents centered on a “slamming” allegation stemming from a door-to-door sales call in which a sales agent, acting on behalf of Residents, improperly conducted a third-party verification. Pennsylvania regulations require transactions by EGS sales agents to be verified by the customer, separate from the transaction process, before a contract is finalized.
Pursuant to the proposed settlement, Residents will pay a civil penalty of $6,000, comply with certain reporting requirements to the Commission, and provide the Commission with a single point of contact for resolution of consumer inquiries or complaints received by the PUC’s Bureau of Consumer Services.
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission balances the needs of consumers and utilities; ensures safe and reliable utility service at reasonable rates; protects the public interest; educates consumers to make independent and informed utility choices; furthers economic development; and fosters new technologies and competitive markets in an environmentally sound manner.
For recent news releases and video of select Commission proceedings or more information about the PUC, visit our website at www.puc.pa.gov. Follow the PUC on Twitter – @PA_PUC for all things utility. “Like” PAPowerSwitch on Facebook for easy access to information on electric shopping.
# # #