UTC Banner
Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission  September 2008
Table of Contents
Utility Locates
Natural Gas Outlook
Stay Warm this Winter
Reduce your Monthly Payment
UTC Help
A Purchase Gas Adjustment (PGA) is a regulatory tool used by the UTC to adjust the price of natural gas in the wholesale market. The single largest cost of operating a gas company is purchasing gas to sell to customers. The total cost of gas is passed through to customers, this means that the company does not earn a return on or lose any money on the cost of prudently incurred gas costs.

More Info About
Railroad Safety
Quick Links
UTC Contacts

Call Before You Dig
1-800-424-5555 or 811

Commission Calendar
Upcoming Open Meetings
Oct. 8, 9:30 am
Oct. 30, 9:30 am
Nov. 13, 9:30 am
Join Our Mailing List
Welcome to the Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) e-newsletter. If you have questions about UTC Connections, please email consumer@utc.wa.gov.

The UTC works every day to protect consumers by ensuring that utility and transportation services are fairly priced, available, reliable and safe. This bi-monthly e-newsletter is intended to provide you with current information about
regulated industries, current issues and topics that impact you.

Thank you.
Problem with a Utility Locate? 
Call the Commission!
When you Call Before You Dig, how are your locates?  Are they inaccurate or inadequate? If you've experienced a locate with incomplete markings, a late locate, or no locate at all, call with your complaint. The number is 888-333-WUTC (9882), and a consumer complaint investigator will attempt to resolve the issue between involved parties, as commission staff gather information to improve damage prevention efforts in the state.

Natural Gas Outlookelectric meter
Natural gas customers in the   Northwest may be seeing double-digit rate increases this fall due to record wholesale natural gas costs.  Natural gas rates are based on both past, and expected future, costs of wholesale natural gas.  Industry representatives warn that the situation could worsen in the future with regional demand for natural gas expected to grow more than seven percent by 2012, and by 50 percent by 2025. Click here to read more about the natural gas markets.

natural gas burner
Stay Warm this Winter
If the cost of heating your home is overwhelming your budget, there are assistance programs available.LIHEAP, the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, is a federally-funded program to help low-income households with their home energy bills.
This program may be able to offer bill payment assistance, energy crisis assistance, and weatherization and energy-related home repairs. Starting in October, funds will be available for those who qualify, to help keep the heat on. For more information on applying for energy assistance, call
1-866-674-6327 or visit www.liheapwa.org.  

Reduce your Monthly Utility Payments
Budget billing options with utility companies average your utility payments out over a 12-month period, reducing the impact of high winter energy bills. Budget billing gives you more certainty about what your electric or natural gas bill will be from month to month. Instead of paying high bills in the winter and low bills in the summer, you pay about the same amount all year round. This is available to all residential electric and natural gas customers.

Contact your utility company and ask about their budget billing payment plan:

Puget Sound Energy - 1-888-225-5773
Avista - 1-800-227-9187
Cascade Natural Gas - 1-888-522-1130
Northwest Natural Gas - 1-800-422-4012 
Pacific Power - 1-888-221-7070

Weatherize for Energy Savings Program Thermostat
State and utility funds are available to help low-income families weatherize their homes to reduce energy costs. 

To contact local weatherization coordinators about program details and eligibility requirements, click here.There are a number of inexpensive ways to reduce your energy bill this winter: 

  • Renew or install weatherstripping on all doors.
  • Install a programable thermostat for home heating. It can save lots of energy while you're sleeping or away from home - and will re-warm you house shortly before you wake up or return home from work.
  • Reduce energy usage during peak periods between 6-9am and 4-9pm.
  • Lower your hot water heater thermostat to 120 
  • Use a six-minute wash cycle with cold water to wash laundry. Clothes will get cleaned and last longer, you will also use less water and energy. 

    Click here for more energy saving tips
Get Help
What Can the UTC Do For You? 
Do you need help with:
Get Help for problems with private utility and transportation providers.

Please call 888-333-WUTC (9882) or email
Tell a Friend 
Please take a moment and forward the new UTC Connections e-newsletter to a friend, family member or co-worker who may be interested in similar issues.  Just click on "Forward email" below.  Thank you.