REPORT FROM THE HAWAII STATE SENATE — The Senate Committees on Commerce and Consumer Protection and Energy and Environment will be holding a joint informational briefing on Tuesday, January 29 at 8:30 a.m. in the State Capitol’s Auditorium.
The purpose of this informational briefing is to receive information on factors that impact electric rates, the rate- making process and to identify potential solutions to reduce the adverse impacts of increasingly high electric rates on consumers statewide.
“As electrical rates continue to climb, it is important for us to look for ways that could reduce rates and help lessen the burden of high utility costs on our constituents,” said Senator Roz Baker, chair of the Senate Committee on Commerce and Consumer Protection.
The Committee is interested in information about efforts to create an integrated electrical grid using available renewable energy and firm power to benefit consumers with lower rates and reach our green energy goals efficiently and cost-effectively.
“We want to hear the strategies the PUC and the utilities plan to use to incorporate more renewable energy onto the grid,” said Senator Mike Gabbard, chair of the Senate Committee on Energy and Environment.
The Committee is also interested in hearing what potential challenges may arise and the strategies that will be used address those challenges.
The following organizations are invited to participate:
· Public Utilities Commission (PUC), Hermina Morita, Chair
· Jeffrey Ono, Executive Director, Division of Consumer Advocacy, Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs,
· Robbie Alm, Executive Vice President, Hawaiian Electric Company, Inc.
· Sharon Suzuki, President, Maui Electric Company, Ltd.
· Jay Ignacio, President, Hawaii Electric Light Company, Inc.
· David Bissell, President and Chief Executive Officer, Kauai Island Utility Cooperative
The briefing will be broadcast live on Oahu on Olelo channel 53. For neighbor island broadcast information, please call the following public access organizations:
- Kauai: Ho’ike Community Television (www.hoike.org), phone (808) 246-1556 (no web-streaming).
- Maui: Akaku: Maui Community Television (www.akaku.org), phone (808) 871-5554 (web-streaming available).
- Big Island: Na Leo O Hawaii (www.naleo.tv), phone (808) 935-8874 (Hilo) or (808) 329-9617 (Kailua-Kona) (web-streaming available).