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Gov. Cuomo Calls For Audit Of Long Island Power Authority

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LIPA Truck (file / credit: Long Island Power Authority)

LIPA Truck (credit: Long Island Power Authority)

haskell_feature Peter Haskell
Peter Haskell joined WCBS in 1994. This followed stints at WCTC Radio...
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UNIONDALE, NY (CBSNewYork/AP) — Electricity customers on Long Island may be entitled to a break following a rates review.

WCBS 880’s Peter Haskell: Gov. Cuomo Says There Have Been Irregularities

Gov. Andrew Cuomo called on the state inspector to audit the Long Island Power Authority’s billing and delivery charges to make sure customers are not overpaying.

Cuomo said he wasn’t alleging any wrongdoing, but he questioned two delivery charge increases of about 2 percent, just below a level he said would require review by the Public Service Commission, and $33 million in charges to ratepayers for recovery from a storm that never occurred.
   
“I think there’s been a series of irregularities,” Cuomo said. “I have no idea why.”

Earlier this year, LIPA announced it was returning some $129 million in overcharges from a faulty formula to calculate fuel surcharges.

Incremental rate cuts to remedy that situation began this month.

The utility received the lowest customer satisfaction rating on April 19, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index, a survey designed by the University of Michigan.

LIPA customer Susan Hobad was not surprised: “I feel that LIPA just takes the money and runs, has no regard for taking care of its customers.”

She said her bills total more than $400 a month over the summer.

“Well, I know it’s expensive. But what am I going to do?” she said. “Maybe if they had some competition, the rates would go down.

The average score was 73 out of 100. LIPA received a 65. Con Edison received a score of 72 and PSEG got a 78.

“We welcome the opportunity to work with the inspector general’s office and will cooperate fully with the audit and are confident that this audit will be a step along the path of restoring confidence in our rates and charges,” Chief Operating Officer Michael Hervey said.

Are you a customer of LIPA? What do you think of the utility? Leave a comment below…

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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