Utility Reform

Residential electric ratepayers in Michigan have experienced many frustrating years of high costs and poor customer service.  Because of what is effectively a residential electric monopoly market in Michigan, Sen. Colbeck believes that utility users deserve to be treated fairly when it comes to rates and must be able to receive reasonable accommodations when it comes to equipment placed onto their property. Ultimately, the monopoly-like markets in Michigan need to be changed so that ratepayers don’t feel like captive customers who can’t seek service from another provider when they receive poor service.

For that reason Sen. Colbeck voted against SB 437 & SB 438 last session because the bills didn’t do enough to help customers (and in some cases made things worse). He also offered an amendment to allow for necessary and reasonable accommodations when it came to true meter choice.  Although the amendment failed to get enough votes to pass, the Senator has remained a strong consumer advocate and has persistently worked with the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) to fight for lower rates, stronger rules, shut-off protections, and investigations into utilities.  The MPSC opened an official inquiry into DTE practices late last year.

To learn more on how to file a utility complaint or to seek compensation for power outages please click HERE.

Press releases:

Colbeck introduces legislation to increase penalties for utility violations (9/21/18)

Colbeck: Law must be changed to increase penalties for utility violations (7/17/18)

Colbeck: Cybersecurity again found lacking (3/20/18)

Colbeck regarding DTE penalties: Record fines needed, people must be compensated (2/26/18)

Sen. Colbeck testifies before House Energy Policy Committee (1/17/18)

Sen Colbeck calls for electric shut-off moratorium (12/21/17)

Colbeck questions Michigan Public Service Commission (11/01/17)

Sen. Colbeck: Safety and security concerns drive need for smart meter opt-out (3/7/17)

Legislation:

SB 1124  Increases utility company and management fines for violations of law or public service commission rules

SB 1125  Provides for additional public utility consumer protections

SB 1126  Provides restrictions upon government regulators subsequently working for public utilities

SB 1128  Allows for utility customers to request or retain analog utility meters

SJR U  Increase constitutional protections for homeowner property rights

Editorials:

Power to the people October 19, 2017

The ‘Power’ of Freedom January 13, 2016

Speeches & Testimony:

Please click HERE to view Sen. Colbeck’s testimony and floor speeches.