If you noticed a jump in your March gas bill, you're not alone.
On May 14, Peoples Gas released its first quarter report for the pipe replacement program that consumers were told would add a $1.14 surcharge to their monthly bills. Instead, the report shows that the average Peoples Gas customer paid more than $12 extra in March. The troubled pipe replacement program has far exceeded its budget while failing to deliver on many of the consumer benefits it promised — and the excessive surcharges have contributed to a home heating affordability crisis in Chicago. Gov. J.B. Pritzker recently introduced an energy bill that would end the surcharge, as well as automatic formula rate hikes used by other utilities, and Illinois PIRG is calling on that state Legislature to pass it.
"We didn’t give Peoples Gas a blank check, and we can't afford to waste money on supposed 'upgrades' which so far have not reduced pipeline failure rates," said Illinois PIRG State Director Abe Scarr.
"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."
Learn more about our ongoing campaign to convince Illinois lawmakers to reform this wasteful project.