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New Jersey residents will see slightly lower monthly electric bills, except for PSE&G customers

By: Alexi Friedman |

Three of New Jersey’s four utilities will have lower monthly electricity rates for residents and small businesses for the 12-month period starting in June, the state Board of Public Utilities announced today.

Public Service Electric and Gas, the state’s largest provider, is the lone exception.

PSE&G residential customers using the statewide average of 650 kilowatt hours per month can expect to spend about 6 cents more on each bill. Customers using the other three electric distribution companies will see a monthly decrease of roughly $3 to $6.75 a month.

The announced prices are the result of the electricity auction for new service contracts, where energy suppliers offer a price to power companies. The winning price gets passed on to ratepayers directly.

“The auction results are good news for most ratepayers, and the board will continue to strive for stable and affordable utility costs, which will improve the state’s economic competitiveness,” BPU president Robert Hanna said today.

Prices also doubled for medium and large businesses from last year, the BPU said, largely because the set cost of capacity increased on the four distribution companies.

But officials said that increase will not be widespread because nearly 90 percent of those customers are served by third-party providers unaffected by the auction results.

In a statement, PSE&G spokeswoman Karen Johnson said residential bills will remain “about the same as they are now, even though this year’s auction results reflect substantial investments PSE&G is making in transmission upgrades to maintain safe, reliable service.”

Residents using Jersey Central Power and Light, the state’s second largest provider, can expect to pay on average about $2.91 less on their monthly bill.

Residents who use Atlantic Electric will pay $6.42 less a month, while those who use Rockland Electric, which serves the fewest number of New Jersey residents, will pay $6.74 less on average.

Prices don’t include infrastructure expenses, so any damage related to Hurricane Sandy is not included, said Greg Reinert, a BPU spokesman.