Maryland lawmakers are considering several bills aimed at regulating electricity, which will cost more for many residential customers starting this summer, when rate caps in place since 1999 are to expire. A look at some of the options lawmakers are considering:
- SB1078: Would delay the expiration of residential electricity rate caps until October of 2007, with a gradual phase-in to market prices.
- SB1079: Electricity suppliers would be banned from raising rates more than 20 percent in a year. If a higher hike were required, customers would have five years to phase in the higher rates.
- SB814, HB1334: Electricity suppliers wouldn't be allowed to raise rates more than 5 percent in a year. If a higher hike were required, customers would have five years to phase in the higher rates.
- SB1048: The Public Service Commission would have to allow four years of gradual rate hikes if electricity rates go up more than 20 percent when price caps expire. Customers could choose the gradual rate increases - plus interest - or they could choose to pay all at once.
- HB1654: Electricity rate caps would stay in effect until a state commission can study the merger of BGE with FPL Group Inc.
Source: Maryland General Assembly