PUC Seeks Comment on Proposed Settlements with Retail Energy Suppliers Concerning Sales & Marketing Practices
Published on 5/20/2021
Proposed Settlements with National Gas & Electric LLC and Eligo Energy PA LLC Address Past Violations Related to Marketing Materials
HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued for comment a pair of proposed settlement agreements between the PUC’s independent Bureau of Investigation & Enforcement (I&E) and two electric generation suppliers – National Gas & Electric, LLC (NG&E) and Eligo Energy PA LLC (Eligo). Both proposed settlements center on alleged inaccurate and potentially misleading information in marketing materials.
The Commission voted 4-0 to issue for comment the proposed settlement between I&E and NG&E stemming from the supplier’s mailing of a promotional postcard that allegedly disclosed confidential customer information, misrepresented savings with NG&E, and provided inaccurate and untimely information about the rate of PPL Electric Utilities (PPL). As a result, the Parties agreed to the following terms and conditions:
- NG&E will pay a civil penalty of $120,000.
- In addition to the civil penalty, NG&E will contribute $30,000 into PPL’s hardship fund.
- NG&E will continue with corrective actions and revisions to its operating procedures which will act as safeguards against future distribution of marketing materials that disclose confidential customer information, misrepresent savings and provide inaccurate and untimely information about rates being offered.
Additionally, the Commission voted 4-0 to issue for comment the proposed settlement between I&E and Eligo stemming from an informal investigation of Eligo and its use of alleged misleading and deceptive marketing materials – which included references or quotes allegedly from the Commission that may have violated the Public Utility Code (Code) and the PUC’s Regulations.
Pursuant to the proposed settlement, Eligo will pay a civil penalty of $188,125.00. The penalty includes:
- A civil penalty of $1,000 for each of the 11 mailers with the phrases “Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission Notice” or “Important PUC Notice,” totaling $11,000.
- A civil penalty of $500 for each of the 22 mailers with the phrase “Final Electric Notice: Attn Recipient: Request for Immediate Action,” totaling $11,000.
- A civil penalty of $500 for each of the 34 mailers with the phrase “Rate Change Notice,” totaling $17,000.
- A civil penalty of $125.00 for each of the 1,193 customer enrollments, totaling $149,125.
Within 20 days of the date of entry of these Orders, interested parties may file comments on the proposed settlements - in accordance with the Commission’s Emergency Order at Docket No. M-2020-3019262. All comments shall be filed through the PUC’s eFiling system. Instructions on eFiling, including how to open a PUC eFiling account, are contained in the Commission’s Orders.
The PUC 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” Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission on Facebook for easy access to information on utility issues.
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