Chicagoans continue to pick up the tab for failing Peoples Gas program

Peoples Gas, a gas utility subsidiary in Chicago, continues to mismanage its pipe replacement project, and its customers are still picking up the financial slack.

Its second-quarter report released on Aug. 20 showed that Chicagoans are paying $13.14 per month for this program, a surcharge that's more than 11 times the amount that the Legislature told customers they would pay back when they approved the surcharge in 2013. This fee accounts for 17 percent of the average customer's bill and is almost as expensive as the gas itself. This also marks the 14th consecutive quarter that the pipe replacement project is behind schedule and over budget.

"It's time to end automatic gas utility surcharges forcing Chicagoans to pick up the tab for this failing program and shielding Peoples Gas from accountability,” said Illinois PIRG Education Fund Director Abe Scarr.

"Illinois needs to marshal all its resources to reach our climate and clean energy goals, not waste billions of dollars on mismanaged fossil fuel infrastructure projects and excess utility profits.”

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Learn more about our ongoing to convince Illinois lawmakers to reform this wasteful project.

Photo: Abe Scarr spoke with ABC7 Chicago about the excessive maintenance costs being unfairly passed on to Peoples Gas customers. Credit: ABC7