INDIANA – The Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) is requesting an Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) investigation to assess the need for monthly utility reporting of disconnection and customer arrearage data. The OUCC is the state agency representing the interests of all Indiana consumers in cases before the Commission.
State law generally does not require utilities to report such data to the Commission. However, in its petition filed today, the OUCC cites ongoing economic conditions including inflation at 40-year highs and significant increases in wholesale natural gas costs, which are driving higher rates for electric and natural gas consumers. The OUCC notes that the IURC required most large investor-owned utilities to report similar data throughout most of 2020 and all of 2021 in its investigation of rate impacts due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This information deficit prevents the Commission, the OUCC, stakeholders, and the public from timely assessing the consequences of this economic environment,” said Indiana Utility Consumer Counselor Bill Fine. “It is impossible to protect affordability for Indiana citizens without knowing how vulnerable customers are coping under these conditions.”
Today’s petition asks the Commission to require all IURC-jurisdictional Indiana utilities with at least 8,000 customer accounts to report the following data on a monthly basis through the end of 2024:
- Residential customer count
- Number of residential accounts that are 60+ days delinquent
- Total balance associated with residential accounts that are 60+ days delinquent
- Number of residential customers on active payment arrangements
- Total balance associated with residential accounts in active payment arrangements
- Number of residential disconnections for non-payment
- Number of residential reconnections associated with accounts disconnected for non-payment
- Number of residential disconnection notices sent for non-payment
According to the petition, “Utilities who choose to object should specifically state why the public interest would not be served by these monthly reports. “
The OUCC will post case updates online at www.in.gov/oucc/featured-topics/arrearage-and-disconnection-data-investigation.Case updates are also available through the agency’s monthly electronic newsletter. Consumers can subscribe at www.in.gov/oucc/news.