Oklahoma leaders vow to keep utility costs from skyrocketing

Mike Seals - February 22, 2021 10:53 pm

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma’s governor and other top officials vowed Monday to make sure residents don’t get stuck having to pay skyrocketing utility bills.

winter storm that plunged Oklahoma into record freezing temperatures last week resulted in soaring costs for natural gas, which powers much of the state’s electricity production.

Attorney General Mike Hunter, whose office represents ratepayers before the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, urged utilities to suspend customers’ automatic payments while his office looks into the issue. He added that the state’s Emergency Price Stabilization Act prohibits companies from increasing prices more than 10% after the declaration of an emergency.

Stitt’s energy secretary, Kenneth Wagner, said most Oklahoma consumers won’t immediately see huge increases in their energy bills based on natural gas prices. But he did caution that customers in some municipalities that buy power or natural gas from smaller, unregulated companies may see marked increases.

“The vast majority of Oklahomans will not see a dramatic increase in their energy bills as a result of these rising gas costs,” Wagner said.

House Speaker Charles McCall and Senate President Pro Tempore Greg Treat both said they were assembling legislative panels to look into the issue. McCall said some of a revenue surplus this year also could be used to help consumers.

“Together we’ll get through this,” said McCall, R-Atoka. “We’ll find a way to lower and minimize the burden to the people of Oklahoma.”

 

 

Latest Stories

Capitol Update from Representative Ken Luttrell

The Fiscal Year 2023 state budget agreement was announced this week, and there are a lot...

OU, OSU Softball Super Regional Schedules Are Set

OKLAHOMA CITY –  Oklahoma and Oklahoma State punched their tickets into the Super Regional round. Both teams now know...

Nearly 60 Veterans Deboard Plane In Solidarity With One Who Couldn’t Fly

TULSA, Oklahoma –  A group of Oklahoma veterans took a dream trip to Washington DC last week but it ended...