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Versant Power to phase in distribution rate change

Release Date:  05-31-2023

Bangor and Presque Isle, Maine — After work with stakeholders including the Office of the Public Advocate, AARP Maine and the Aroostook Energy Association, Versant Power has reached a settlement and received Maine Public Utilities Commission approval for a plan to continue maintenance and improvement of its electricity distribution system.

This will involve a change to the distribution rate, one of five rates that make up customer bills. In order to minimize impact on customers challenged by rising energy supply costs, which have risen at 3-4 times the rate of delivery costs since 2018, as well as upcoming stranded cost increases, driven by the cost of expanded state net energy billing incentives, the change will be phased in over six months. Half of the distribution rate change will take effect on July 1, 2023, and the remaining half will take effect Jan. 1, 2024.

For the average residential customer using 500 kilowatt-hours per month, this change would mean increases of about $5.25 per month, or about 4% of the total bill, in July and January. For a customer using 750 kwh, it would result in two $8.00 increases, and for 1,000 kwh, increases of about $10.50.

05.22.23 Versant Power D Rate Change July 1Versant Power seeks permission from the Maine

The distribution rate settlement will support:

  • Replacement of our metering system, which has reached the end of its useful life
  • Replacement of deteriorating cables providing electricity to customers on islands off the coast of Maine
  • A new substation in Machias, improving reliability and implementing a more environmentally friendly solution
  • Work to improve reliability in the Old Town/Orono area
  • Installation of additional equipment in northern Maine to prevent tree-related outages and reduce the impact and duration of outages that do occur.
  • Continued improvements to our tree pruning program to reduce the number of power outages and harden the system against storms
  • Investment in our technology, keeping customer and other sensitive data secure
  • Retention of quality employees in a competitive labor market

On July 1, Versant Power customers also will see changes in stranded cost and conservation charges on their electricity bills, and northern Maine customers will see transmission rate changes. More specific details about bill impacts will be shared when changes are confirmed and approved.

Public Utilities Commission or the Federal Regulatory Commission for any change to transmission or distribution rates, which represent the cost to bring electricity from where it is made to your home or business. The utility is responsible for delivery of electricity, and does not control or benefit from changes in supply prices.

If you are experiencing financial hardship and have trouble paying your electricity bill, please call us to learn about potential resources. Local Community Action Programs offer applications for assistance programs including the Home Energy Assistance Program, the Low-Income Assistance Program and the Arrearage Management Program, and have partnered with Versant Power for the Power Match program offering electricity assistance to those who might not otherwise qualify for assistance. Customers also may be eligible for assistance through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program or Efficiency Maine. To learn more, visit versantpower.com, call our Customer Contact Center at 1-855-363-7211 or 207-973-2000, or email [email protected]. You can also follow us on Twitter (@versantpower), Instagram (versantpower) or LinkedIn.

Versant Power is committed to delivering safe, reliable electric service. As the state's second-largest electric utility, the company delivers electricity to more than 164,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers across 10,400 square miles in five counties in eastern and northern Maine.

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Maine Public Service District Bangor Hydro District


Versant Power provides electric delivery service to two areas – the Bangor Hydro District and the Maine Public District.

            The Bangor Hydro District includes Hancock, Piscataquis and Washington Counties and most of Penobscot County.
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