In addition to all the other rising prices, it looks like utilities are now hitting the list

November 29 – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission issued a press release last week saying 10 of the PA electric companies will see fairly substantial price increases in the future.

It’s another unfortunate consequence of the inflationary environment we are in today.

Allen Coffman, Councilmember for the First Ward in Chambersburg, attorney Clint Barkdoll, Pat Ryan and Michele Jansen discussed this electricity costs this morning during First News. 

Barkdoll said, “For West Penn, your electric rates will go up 4.6% starting Wednesday. That’s actually on the low end when you look at all of these other utility providers. PP&L which reaches into parts of Cumberland County, a 26% increase starting Wednesday. There’s even some utility providers up in Pike County, their rates are going up over 50 percent.”

The PA PUC also said there are ways to conserve electricity and you can go their website to see if you can shop to get a lower rate.

There’s good news if you live in the Chambersburg borough or Mont Alto borough – those municipalities generate their own electricity and are not connected with the other electric companies.

Barkdoll said, “West Penn is the dominant provider in this area, so everything is going to start to go up for you in your household – your heating bills, your overall electric bills, starting Wednesday.”

Coffman explained how the electric grid works in Chambersburg.

While Chambersburg does purchase power, different blocks of power for different periods of time, the borough also generates power. There are two generation facilities – one off of Grant Street called the Falling Spring station and one below the Orchards.

Coffman explained, “Those two generations facilities do provide power to us, but we also sell it on the grid to other users. We aren’t 100 percent sustainable. We probably could handle everything if everybody would be in moderation with refrigerators. And heat, we could probably handle that without any external sources. We’ve also added just recently the solar facility off of Commerce Street.”

Ryan asked, “Didn’t you lower rates recently?”

Coffman said, “I think we did…maybe a year ago. Actually our cost for power as we’ve been buying it seems to have been going down. Now anybody that’s buying now, I’m sure they aren’t finding the rates down with the problems that we’re seeing. We generate some of our own power. We also have that facility that’s out close to Scotland land fill that produces about 15% of our power, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. That feeds into our system as well. So we’re well positioned to have to deal with what’s been created with this inflation system.”