Versant files notice for $30M rate increase request 

HALLOWELL — The Maine Office of the Public Advocate (OPA) on Aug. 4 expressed doubt that a 28 percent distribution rate increase for Versant Power is warranted. If granted, this increase translates to 9-10 percent of the total billed amount on a residential bill. 

The company, which serves five Maine counties covered by the Bangor Hydro and Maine Public power districts, filed notice on Aug. 4 with the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) that it intends to request a rate increase of 9 percent. Versant now has 60 days to make its formal request to the PUC. 

“The timing of Versant’s proposed increase is unfortunate,” said Maine’s Public Advocate William Harwood. “Mainers are already struggling to pay high energy costs, including the Jan. 1 increase in standard offer prices of more than 80 percent. Now, Versant looks to increase the average residential bill by $10.50 per month.”  

The OPA will be evaluating Versant’s justification for its $30 million requested rate increase. Harwood says his office will look carefully for any evidence of imprudently incurred costs that should not be passed on to ratepayers. 

“The nearly 160,000 families served by Versant already are struggling under the burden of increases in the cost of living,” added Harwood. “The last thing they need is for their electric bills go up by 9 or [more] percent.”  

Versant Power is owned by Enmax Corporation, a utility company based in Canada. 

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