Vermont's largest electric utility says its customers won't see any increase in their base rate for power for at least two years.
In a filing on Friday with state regulators, Green Mountain Power said efficiencies from its merger with Central Vermont Public Service and a continued focus on cost controls means the company can keep base rate flats for the foreseeable future.
GMP spokeswoman Dorothy Schnure said the company had earlier committed to a plan to cap rate increases next year at 2.5 percent. But Schnure says GMP President Mary Powell wanted to eliminate any hike in rates, and ordered utility officials to find efficiencies
“So we’re really pleased that we went from thinking we would need 2.5 percent to having no rate increase particularly at a time when many other utilities in New England are going in looking for rate increases,” Schnure said..
The utility says it’s able to hold rates level, even as power costs continue to rise. The new rates include $15.5 million dollars in savings from the merger with CVPS.
Gov. Peter Shumlin hailed the utility’s decision to hold the line on rates.
"At a time when our neighboring New England states are facing double digit increases in electric costs from some of their utilities, I am thrilled to learn that Green Mountain Power will seek no increase at all in its base rate through September 2015,” the governor said in a prepared statement. “This is great news for jobs and economic opportunity in Vermont, and it shows that Green Mountain Power is keeping its promise to save customers money through the merger approved last year."