(Reading) -- Metropolitan Edison and Pennsylvania Electric have the go-ahead from the state to buy electricity from suppliers. Scott Surgeoner is a spokesman for First Energy, which owns the distributors that do business in the midstate. He says with the Public Utility Commission's approval, the company will make 10 electricity purchases that will affect the rates customers pay when the companies' rate caps expire in January 2011. He says the current electricity supply rates at Met-Ed have been in place since 1992 and Penelec's have been stable since 1986. "Think back 18 years to what you paid for a newspaper or a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread," he says, "versus what you pay today. the initial increase is that increase that has not occurred at all." Surgeoner says the market will determine the prices that suppliers charge. Met-Ed serves about 540,000 customers and Penelec has about 590,000 customers in the commonwealth. PPL's rate caps are set to expire on January 1st 2010.
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