High Utility Bills Burning A Hole In Households’ Pockets, Here’s Why And What You Can Do

Pixabay / MGN

ALBANY (WENY) – Utility bill increases are soaring across the state, just one more thing many tell us is burning a hole in their pockets. 

Households in New York and Pennsylvania are seeing big spikes in what they’re being charged monthly in their utility bill and are feeling the pinch in their pockets. Utility companies say they’re stuck in the middle and have no control over these gas prices.

Many residents say every month it gets higher and higher and they are not happy about it.

“It’s like Russian roulette you don’t know what it’s going to be,” Trina Underhill said!

She gets her energy through a solar power company however it is billed through NYSEG. She says she hasn’t received a decrease in her bill from credits NYSEG should have applied to her account. As a matter of fact, it’s spiked from $230 a month to $400 a month so she contacted them.

“I said why are the bills so high? I knew I wasn’t the only one complaining about them and they said because of new surcharges and inflation you know they gave me the whole run around,” Underhill said.

A resident from Athens gets heat through Valley Energy Inc.  She explains her bill has quadrupled this past month.

“Usually, my bill is only $60, and this past month it went up to $300 a month and I’ve never had it over 60.  I leave my heat the same every day all day,” Jocelyn Burns said.

One resident from Elmira is retired and on a fixed income, is really feeling the pinch in his pockets. His bill soared from $170 to $371 for the month of February.

“I called them when the February bill came out and said what’s going on with this. This is really high. I never had a bill like this and she said maybe we guesstimated this,” Bruce Sharpe said.

A resident from Jasper said ditto! No one has come to read her meter in over a year and complained she was billed based on guesstimates done by NYSEG she said.

“What they do is if they don’t come their estimate is based on your past usage that goes back a year or so.” Lucy Luckey said.

NYSEG Communications Director Michael Jamison said he feels the pain of his customers, however, the utility company is not to blame for the increase in gas prices.

“The United States has seen gas prices double and certainly New York generates a significant amount of electricity from natural gas  What customers are seeing is an increase in supply cost on their bills. NYSEG does not benefit or profit from the supply cost.  The cost of electricity and supply is on the rise,” Jamison said.

The President and CEO of Valley Enegy Inc., which provides service in the Twin Tiers said gas prices have gone up slightly.

It’s a combination of a slightly higher gas cost along with colder temperatures that in total have increased utility bills, Ed Rogers said.

Both companies offered tips to save on energy.

-Turning the thermostat down at night or when you leave the house.

-Have your furnace and heating equipment checked and cleaned on a yearly basis.

And for customers worried about paying their bills, both companies say they have a number of budget-paying options and programs, to avoid getting your service turned off.



  1. Who paid for all those windmill and solar electric generating farms? How much of NY’S electricity is generated percentage wise by solar, windmill, nuclear then natural gas?

  2. I have never had a propane bill over $350 for a fillip (country living, no natural gas). I keep the heat set at 58 incase there’s a power failure, the pipes won’t burst. January was 550+ and last week was $535+. I’m on a fixed income and can’t afford this!

  3. I have National Grid here in Hudson Falls, NY and my bill went from around $260 to $460 a month overnight and I’m not using any more than before. I’m also retired and living on Social Security. They are lying thieves and are gouging the public and should be thrown in jail!!!

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