Utility Bill Increases During Winter Months

The Attorney General's Office has received a number of complaints related to rising costs of electric and natural gas. We recognize the hardship that increased utility bills place on Kentucky families. We're closely evaluating the complaints we've received. Many of the reported increases are related to the fuel adjustment clause (FAC). The FAC is a pass-through cost based on the cost of fuel to generate electricity. This cost can fluctuate based on the price of fuel, or purchased power, used to supply electricity. The FAC can affect the cost of natural gas and electric utility bills. 

The FAC is regulated by the Kentucky Public Service Commission, a separate government agency which also regulates public utilities. Each month, the Kentucky Public Service Commission reviews FAC filings for accuracy. The Public Service Commission also evaluates and approves customer and delivery charges related to natural gas service. Complaints related to FAC and customer delivery charges can be filed with the Public Service Commission here:  https://psc.ky.gov/WebNet/Inquiry.

As background, the FAC is a separate cost from utility rates because it fluctuaes monthly.  One month, it may appear as a credit on your account, and the next month it may appear as a charge as the cost fluctuates.  This is billed in direct proportion to the amount of electricity consumed and the cost the companies pay for the fuel (coal or natural gas) to generate that amount of electricity.  During peak winter months, the FAC cost often rises because the price of natural gas typically rises. 

You may wish to consider enrolling in an average monthly payment plan. Many utility companies offer plans that spread the costs of heating and cooling over the whole year, allowing Kentuckians to pay roughly the same amount during high usage months as you pay during off-peak months. To learn more about monthly payment plan options, contact your utility company. ​

If you need assistance with paying your current bill, Community Action administers the HEART and THAW and LIHEAP programs.  They also now have a water assistance program called LIHWAP that qualifying Kentuckians can access to help with water and sewer bills.  Community Action can also help qualifying individuals with the weatherization of their homes.  To locate a CAA regional office in your area, see the agency contact sheet​