PEABODY — The light plant's rates that kicked in July 1 are the lowest they have been since December 2009, according to Peabody Municipal Light Plant spokesman John Maihos.

The community-owned, nonprofit utility, which provides power to ratepayers in Peabody and South Lynnfield, outlined the new Purchased Power & Fuel Cost Adjustment rates that will be in effect from July and September.

Typical PMLP customers across all three rate classes — residential, commercial and industrial — will see their bills drop over the next three months.

A typical residential customer using 500 kilowatt hours a month will see their monthly bills decrease from $53.17 to $52.30, a drop of 1.6%. Commercial customers using 2,000 kWh a month will see their bills drop by 2.1%, while the typical industrial user will see their monthly bills go down by 1%, when compared to last quarter.

Why are rates going down?

“It’s a combination of market conditions (lower energy prices) and PMLP’s diversified power portfolio which helps to manage costs to our customers," according to Assistant Manager Bryan Howcroft.

Even with some of the lowest rates in the state, PMLP is encouraging customers to conserve power, especially during the peak summer months, as higher demand can drive up prices. The utility suggests keeping the air conditioner off or on a slightly warmer temperature setting, which will help ensure savings down the road.

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