State regulators to decide Tuesday whether to expand CMP investigation

CMP smart meter (WGME photo)

AUGUSTA (WGME) -- The Maine Public Utilities Commission is expected to vote Tuesday on whether to expand its investigation into metering and billing issues at Central Maine Power.

For months customers have said their bills just don't make any sense, and we've now learned the PUC has received more than 1,000 complaints about unexpectedly high bills this winter.

[MPUC Consumer Assistance Division: 1-800-452-4699]

In February commissioners voted to open an investigation in the complaints, following extensive analysis of customer bills sent to the I-Team.

Harry Lanphear, spokesperson for MPUC, said commissioners will vote Tuesday on whether to also pursue a management audit as part of the same investigative docket.

Lanphear described the audit as another tool to study something in-depth.

If commissioners vote to move forward with the audit, they'll likely hire a consultant with expertise in metering and billing.

CMP has until the end of the month to answer a series of detailed questions, including about its new billing system.

CMP previously told the I-Team it was looking at all possibilities, including new billing software, but had not found any systemic issues.

The Public Utilities Commission plans to meet at 10 a.m. Tuesday at the state house.

The I-Team has done a dozen stories about these customer concerns and CMP's response.

You can find them all in the I-Team section of this website.

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