ELLWOOD CITY – In a letter sent to members of Ellwood City Borough Council Wednesday, Rep. Aaron Bernstine (R-10) and Sen. Elder Vogel Jr. (R-47) urged immediate implementation of proposed changes to Ellwood City Electric to ensure protection and increased transparency for residents.
“These changes are the result of months of discussions and meetings we’ve had with residents, current and former council members and business owners,” said the lawmakers. “We believe they are necessary to help the electric service continue to improve and develop.”
The lawmakers outlined several proposed changes including setting rates comparable to other regional energy providers, providing advance notice of rate structures, adhering to Public Utility Commission requirements for electricity shut off, increased payment periods for billing, expanded budget payment plan eligibility, review of landlord/tenant policies and elimination or reduction of reactivation fees and prohibitive costs for restart of service after shutoff, as well as increased opportunities for public input on policies.
Bernstine and Vogel also expressed concerns about the economic impact to the borough if the ongoing issues are not resolved.
“Our concern is that if current practices remain unchanged, residents and businesses will continue to leave Ellwood City and efforts to attract new residents and businesses will be stifled,” they said.
The lawmakers encouraged action on the proposed policy changes, no later than Aug. 31.