Energy Costs Drive Legislative Session Agenda
In a year that began with rising energy costs, the 2023 legislative session focused on increased regulatory oversight for utility companies.
Much of those efforts were concentrated in SB 7, a so-called aircraft bill that passed the House 115-33 in the waning days of the session after winning unanimous approval from the Senate late last month.
CBIA voiced concerns about the bill given it represented another major change to regulations before previous regulatory revisions had properly taken effect.
This bill creates greater oversight on the decoupling mechanism used by utility companies in the rate-making process and prohibits utilities from recovering costs such as lobbying and membership dues through ratepayer charges.
Under previous law, the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority was encouraged to accept a settlement in a ratemaking process. PURA will now be allowed to reject a settlement for a rate case.
The bill also reclassifies nuclear energy as a class one renewable energy source and calls for the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection to study the development of a small modular nuclear reactor in Connecticut.
SB 7 also required the Department of Administrative Services, in conjunction with the state building inspector, to study requiring gas leak detectors in all new construction projects.
CBIA successfully opposed legislation that would have increased the cost of internet access.
HB 5640 required that any time a customer canceled internet service, the provider must remove their service cables within 30 days or face fines.
“This added requirement on telecommunications and cable companies will come with
an increased cost to consumers and a delay in new customers receiving their broadband internet,” CBIA’s Pete Myers told an Energy and Technology Committee hearing.
“This legislation would work in the opposite direction of our state’s goals of expanding access to broadband.”
The committee did not act on the bill.
For more information, contact CBIA’s Pete Myers (860.244.1921).
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