Investing In Our Future
Central Hudson proposed a new rate plan to the Public Service Commission (PSC) to replace its current plan, which ends in June 2024.
The new plan enables the company to provide continued safe and reliable utility operations, replace aging infrastructure, respond to extreme storms and weather events, facilitate New York State’s important environmental goals, and implement new technologies to improve customer service. The plan will be reviewed by state regulators and interested parties, and if approved would be implemented during the summer of 2024.
Rate Plan Filing In-Person Public Statement Hearings Notice Rate Plan Proposal Summary
Review of utility rate plan proposals follows an 11-month regulatory process. If approved, the one-year plan would set new delivery rates for electric and natural gas service to begin on July 1, 2024. The proposed plan will be reviewed and decided upon by the Public Service Commission with participation by interested parties and public comment; the Commission may approve, modify or reject any or all of the proposed terms.
Central Hudson plans to continue investing in new technologies that improve the durability and reliability of the grid.
PREPARING FOR AND RESPONDING TO SEVERE WEATHER EVENTS
Storms impacting the Mid-Hudson region have become stronger and more frequent. Communities depend on continuous electricity service and a rapid response by Central Hudson following severe weather events.
COMPLIANCE WITH CLEAN ENERGY INITIATIVES
To align with New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act’s targets and regulations, Central Hudson must invest in technologies that play a vital role in reducing fossil fuel dependence and advancing the clean energy transition for the benefit of our customers and the environment.
|Energy efficiency programs are among the most cost-effective ways to reduce emissions and lower energy use. Central Hudson’s proposal continues its full suite of incentives and services that help all customers reduce their environmental footprint and save money. Our programs support CLCPA objectives and promote electric vehicles, efficient heating and cooling, building weatherization and renewable energy.
|Incentives for the adoption of heat pumps help customers transition to cleaner heating options and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Central Hudson’s heat pump programs have consistently exceeded goals, and since 2009 facilitated the installation of nearly 21,000 heat pumps and nearly 3,000 heat pump water heaters. Our efficiency programs reduced energy demands by enough to power nearly 60,000 homes and avoided around 1.2 billion pounds of greenhouse gas emissions each year. Currently, around two-thirds of Central Hudson’s customers utilize a carbon-intensive fuel other than electricity or natural gas for heating.
|The proposal includes required investments to update electric and natural gas lines and implement the advanced technologies required to meet increased electrification goals that reduce emissions. Critical investments in grid modernization allow for greater interconnection of distributed energy sources such as solar, battery storage and wind. These investments will allow Central Hudson to adapt to the changing energy landscape and provide better services to our customers.
The plan includes upgrades to technologies that improve the customer experience when interacting with Central Hudson.
ECONOMIC AFTERMATH OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
The aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic has had significant financial implications for everyone, including Central Hudson. Rising costs have necessitated a new rate plan to sustain operations and to address the needs associated with a workforce growth that can meet the demands of a 21st-century utility company. Several factors stemming from the pandemic have impacted our operations and cost structure:
|As we’ve seen across the economy, inflation has significantly raised costs for many goods and services. For example, according to government sources since 2020 construction materials in general have risen by more than 35% and higher for many items, and transportation fuels by more than 50%. Central Hudson is also experiencing rising costs for materials, equipment, and other essential resources needed to maintain and improve our services.
|The pandemic has led to changes in the job market, resulting in higher rates of employee turnover and thus costs associated with recruiting, hiring and training new employees. Because of these factors and together with natural attrition, it becomes crucial to hire new talent and skilled labor to provide the necessary expertise and capacity to serve our customers effectively. To meet the needs of its customers, Central Hudson aims to grow its workforce by 20%.