Rochester Gas and Electric (RG&E) announced on Oct. 25, 2023 that its customers can expect to see a decrease in their winter heating bills this season.
The company says it is forecasting a 30 percent decrease in supply costs for natural gas, which means the average residential customer taking supply service from RG&E can expect to pay $40 less for gas supply service over the November through March timeframe compared to winter 2022-23.
According to RG&E’s reporting, the company is also forecasting a “slight increase in supply cost for electricity,” based on current market prices compared to last year. RG&E is forecasting that the average residential customer taking commodity service from RG&E can expect to pay nearly $40 more in electric supply service from December 2022 to March 2023.
“We want our customers to know that help is always here for them when they need it,” said Vice-President of Customer Service for NYSEG and RG&E Christine Alexander. “We encourage them to take steps to ensure they’re able to get financial assistance that is available to them.”
RG&E says it purchases natural gas and electricity supply on the open market. The company further says it does not “realize any financial benefit from supply charges,” which are pass-through costs that represent the actual cost of purchasing the energy (natural gas and electricity) to deliver to customers.
Even with lower supply costs, the RG&E says it recognizes that customers can be challenged by winter heating bills.
“Part of the reason for the projected decrease in gas supply costs is due to improved reserves in the U.S. and in part by less demand for liquified natural gas in Europe,” said Pat Fox, senior director of Energy Services for RG&E. “If we have normal winter weather, we expect to see the cost of natural gas fall off significantly compared to last year.”
The company is reminding its customers of payment options, budget billing, energy saving tips and energy efficiency programs. Customers can begin applying for the Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP), which was set to open Nov. 1, 2023.
HEAP is a federal grant program that helps eligible households pay for energy costs and weatherization. Benefits are available through March 15, 2024, or until funds are exhausted, whichever occurs first.
For more information about HEAP, please visit mybenefits.ny.gov or customers can contact their local Department of Social Services.