Most major Indiana Utilities will report disconnection and customer arrearage data

INDIANA – Eight Indiana utilities – including 5 of the 6 largest energy utilities – will share monthly data on disconnections and customer arrearages with the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC) through early 2024.

The following utilities will report the data under new settlement agreements with the OUCC:

  • AES Indiana
  • CenterPoint Energy
  • Duke Energy
  • Indiana Michigan Power (I&M)
  • Northern Indiana Public Service Co. (NIPSCO)
  • Community Natural Gas Co.
  • Indiana Natural Gas Corp.
  • Midwest Natural Gas Corp.
William Fine
Bill Fine

“The information we will collect from participating utilities will provide a helpful benchmark as we enter into the winter heating season,” said Indiana Utility Consumer Counselor Bill Fine. “We need to take a data-based approach to examine how consumers, especially low- and middle-income households, are coping with increased energy costs. I greatly appreciate the collaborative and voluntary efforts of the participating utilities, who agree with us that this information is important in serving their customers.”

The OUCC is the state agency representing consumer interests before the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC).

Under the agreements, participating utilities will provide the OUCC with non-confidential data for each month from October 2022 through March 2024. Monthly information will include the total number of residential accounts, along with the number of residential customer accounts that:

  • Are 60 or more days delinquent, along with the total dollars of those arrearages.
  • Are on active payment arrangements, along with total dollars of arrearages associated with the arrangements.
  • Have been disconnected in the specific month.
  • Have received disconnection notices sent due to non-payment.

In addition, larger investor-owned utilities, AES Indiana, CenterPoint Energy, Duke Energy, Indiana Michigan Power (I&M), and Northern Indiana Public Service Co. (NIPSCO) will report the number of accounts receiving LIHEAP assistance that are past due, and the total dollars owed with respect to those accounts. The larger utilities will also report the numbers of consumers who have been reconnected following disconnection due to nonpayment.

“This information will be similar to the data these utilities reported to the IURC throughout most of 2020 and all of 2021, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic,” continued Fine. “It will enable us to monitor a majority of energy customers to assess the ongoing economic effects of inflation, high natural gas costs, and higher gas and electric bills on Hoosier utility ratepayers.”

Indiana law generally does not require utilities to report disconnection or arrearage data to state government agencies.

In June, the OUCC requested an IURC investigation to assess the need for monthly utility reporting of disconnection and customer arrearage data. On Monday, the OUCC asked the IURC to dismiss the case, under the terms of the settlement agreements.