Energy Utilities Host Assistance Event in Hartford Amid Soaring Bills – NBC Connecticut

Energy bills are soaring and so are frustrations as people struggle to pay them.

Some people received a little help doing that at a community event put on by utility companies on Wednesday.

“Groceries went up, gas went up, rent went up. This is a new year. Everything went up but my paycheck,” said Wyontena Greene of Hartford.

Dozens showed up for one-on-one assistance with staff from utilities at the Hartford event.

“I heard they were going to be helping. My grandma said closed mouths don’t get fat. So I’m asking for help,” said Shelby Griffiths of Hartford

Customers told us they’re dealing with skyrocketing electric and gas bills reaching hundreds of dollars or more.

“I am really sympathetic. I understand the frustration,” said Jared Lawrence, Eversource senior vice president.

Utilities including Eversource say the recent doubling in the electric supply rate is blamed on demand and volatile world events.

“Really the goal today is for our reps to sit down one-on-one with each customer and talk through their current situation and determine what programs they are best suited for,” Lawrence said.

Eversource and Connecticut Natural Gas offer different assistance programs, including a forgiveness plan.

“Some people just say I’m not going to qualify for that so I’m not going to check into it. But it’s definitely worth checking into,” said Tracy Pelella, Avangrid Connecticut customer service vice president.

And for some leaving, there was a little bit of relief.

“I know it’s going to help out in the long run. Just to ease the burden a little bit,” Greene said.

Credits will also be appearing on some bills for several months, higher for those who qualify financially.

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