Virtual Public Hearing Reminder from PSC on Columbia Gas Proposed Rate Increase

The Maryland Public Service Commission will hold a virtual public comment hearing on the request by Columbia Gas of Maryland, Inc. to increase its gas distribution rates by $6.1 million. Customers and other interested parties are welcome to take part in the hearing, scheduled for Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 7 p.m. Public Utility Law Judge Christine Burke will preside.

Columbia Gas, a subsidiary of NiSource, Inc., provides natural gas distribution service to approximately 33,000 customers in the Maryland counties of Allegany, Garrett and Washington.  As proposed, the total bill for an average residential customer would increase from $97.65 per month to $108.47 per month, or by 11.1%. According to Columbia’s application, the rate increase is necessary due to increasing investment in the replacement of leak-prone pipeline infrastructure and higher operation and maintenance expenses. The company’s most recent prior rate case was decided by the Commission in November 2020.

Members of the public who wish to speak at the hearing can sign up by sending an email to psc.pulj@gmail.com by 12 noon on the day of the hearing. The hearing will be held on the Webex platform and participants will receive an email with the link to join in. The hearing will be simultaneously livestreamed on the Public Utility Law Judge’s YouTube channel: https://bit.ly/2X6wLiP

In addition to the hearing, written comments can be submitted electronically until October 22, 2021 through the Commission’s online portal at https://www.psc.state.md.us/make-a-public-comment/  Comments may also be sent by mail to: Andrew Johnston, Executive Secretary, Maryland Public Service Commission, William Donald Schaefer Tower, 6 St. Paul Street, 16th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202. All comments should reference Case. No 9664