Power utility lines are seen, Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2021, in Pownal, Maine. Credit: Robert F. Bukaty / AP

Letters submitted by BDN readers are verified by BDN Opinion Page staff. Send your letters to letters@bangordailynews.com.

Here in Bangor, I live in an all-electric condo with a kerosene Monitor (operated by electricity) that heats the living room-dining room, kitchen and hall. I use a small heater to heat the den. I do not heat the upstairs.

As an 84-year-old Mainer, I am upset by the  sharp increase on my electric bill from Versant Power in January. Comparing my February 2021 bill of $126.70 to February 2022 bill of $192.60 was shocking. I did not expect this much of an increase, and neither did most of my friends and neighbors.

There is a bill, LD 318, that could help protect more ratepayers like me, as well as support research that would make sure electric utility bills do not explode from year to year like they did this winter. But, it doesn’t go far enough when it comes to important consumer protection amendments to make this a bill all Mainers can support.

The Public Utilities Commission needs to explore ways to reduce the cost to consumers. LD 318 would allow the Maine Public Advocate to examine three policies that govern our standard offer service. This effort would help us avoid the potential dramatic swings in energy costs we have seen this winter.

As an advocate with AARP Maine, I support any effort to reduce our monthly electric bills to Mainers of all ages and offer the needed consumer protections that won’t leave certain ratepayers behind.

Rosalyn Fisher