Retail Adjustments Ding Customer Wallets
With natural gas prices plummeting, you’d expect customers to be getting a break, right? Well, according to Dominion Energy Ohio and Columbia Gas, that doesn’t seem to be the case. So, let’s take a look at why Ohio natural gas utilities are raising their rates.
Why Are Natural Gas Retail Prices Rising?
If natural gas prices are going down overall, why are they rising when you buy it for your home? Well, that’s because Dominion Energy is passing off its costs to you. The reason is that Dominion Energy is still playing catch up after last year’s insane price spikes. Some people have called this cost “unjust” and it’s not wrong after electricity prices more than doubled in some locales. Since Columbia Gas is under the same pressure, PUCO has approved their requested rate increase as well.
What Can You Expect To Pay On Your Natural Gas?
Let’s take a look at how much your natural gas rate will be increasing. The increases are to the Retail Price Adjustment. PUCO runs an annual auction process to set the price to compare that also determines the Retail Price Adjustment. This RPA reflects the suppliers’ cost of transporting the gas from where it is produced to Dominion Energy.
Customers in the Dominion Energy service area may see their price rise by about $3 per month for the period April 1, 2023 to March 31, 2024. Similarly, Columbia Gas customers will see increases of about $3-$4 a month on their bills, or up to $48 a year.
Your Dominion Energy Bills May Also Look Different
Meanwhile, Dominion Energy has also asked PUCO to allow them to change how their bills look overall. This is to show off the price to compare a little more prominently. Currently, your Dominion Energy bill only displays the price to compare on the back of the bill. When the change goes through, it will be displayed twice. Once in the front, in friendly bold text, and again on the back.
Ironically, you may be able to see how your price to compare rates rise more clearly.
What To Do If You Can’t Pay
Improved-looking bill or not, if you’re struggling to pay your bills, don’t hesitate to seek help. Ohio energy customers can take advantage of great resources like the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) and the Winter Crisis Program. But the best, long lasting solution to shop around for a new natural gas plan before the price to compare increases take effect. And if you’re looking to switch to a new plan, check out all of your options at www.ohenergyratings.com