Thanks to the hard work of people throughout North Carolina we were able to prevent an almost 20% Duke Energy rate hike last year (it was reduced to 7.2% instead). However, almost before the ink was dry on the February order for the 7.2% increase, both Duke and Progress were announcing that they will be seeking increases in the second half of this year (probably double digit requests).
Even more disturbing is that both Duke Energy and Progress Energy will likely push for the Annual Rate Hike Bill in May, a bill that will allow them to avoid the rate hearings through which the public has been so effective at holding them accountable. This bill would allow the utilities to saddle rate payers for nuclear power plant construction costs before plants are built. Nuclear plants are infamous for cost overruns, delays and often times cancellation of projects midway through — rate payers will be forced to take the risk of financing what Wall Street will not touch. Duke and Progress will be given a virtual blank check that will put us on a path towards doubled rates. Florida is already experiencing the effects of such legislation.
That is why we are organizing. The Annual Rate Hike Training Workshop will happen at Page-Walker Arts & History Center (119 Ambassador Loop, Cary, NC 27513) on Thursday, May 10th, from 6:30PM – 8:30 PM. At this informational and training event we will learn about the Annual Rate Hike Bill and what we need to do now to prevent it from happening. The workshop will be facilitated by NC WARN and co-sponsored by the North Carolina Interfaith Power & Light. At the workshop we will learn about (1) The rate process and how the system works, (2) How to develop a convincing message, and (3) How to connect with one another to take effective action.
Please RSVP to confirm your availability or contact Tania at (919)-783-8650 for more information. Please forward this invitation to others that you know that might want to attend a meeting on this important issue.