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Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission                                       May 2010
Table of Contents
Are You On Facebook?
Verizon-Frontier Sale
Energy Assistance Helps 9.5 Million
Appliance Rebates
Illegal Movers
AARP Money Smarts Events
UTC Help
Puget Sound Energy
 Rate Changes
PSE rates increased slightly on April 7.
Residential electric customers using 1000 kilowatt hours-a-month will now pay about $3.70 more a month.
Residential natural gas customers using 70 therms-a-month will see an 87-cent increase. For more information, click here.
Safe Digging is No Accident!
Check out this video on safe digging and the 8-1-1 one-call center! Know what's below, call before you dig! CBYD Video
To watch the video,

 What consumers are saving...
Since January, UTC Consumer Protection Staff helped consumers save more than $100,000!
Need Help?
Call the Commission!

1-888-333-WUTC (9882)
Quick Links
UTC Contacts
1-888-333-WUTC (9882) 

Call Before You Dig
8-1-1 or 1-800-424-5555

Commission Calendar
Upcoming Open Meetings 
May 13, 9:30 a.m.
May 27, 9:30 a.m. 
 June 10, 9:30 a.m. 
I want to stay connected!
Welcome to the Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) e-newsletter. If you have questions about UTC Connections, please e-mail 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.
Are you on Facebook?  
Stay connected to news, events and more on the commission's Facebook page! Visit www.facebook.com/WAUTC and become a fan today!
Find us on Facebook
Frontier takes over Verizon landlines
Verizon Northwest has sold their landline telephone business to Frontier Communications Corp., which will now be called Frontier NW. The UTC approved the sale last month with numerous consumer-protection conditions including:  
  • No increase on local residential and business telephone rates for three years after the sale is completed.
  • Customers will receive credits if the company's service quality does not meet specific standards.
  • The company will be required to pay an additional $10 - increasing from $25 to $35 - to residential customers for missed service repairs or installation appointments.
  • Customers will receive a $5 credit if their telephone line is out-of-service more than two days.
In addition, Verizon long-distance customers will have a 90-day window to choose another provider without incurring a $5 switching fee. Low-income customers who qualify for phone service through the Washington Telephone Assistance Program would receive a one-time $75 credit if the company fails to apply appropriate discounts or deposit waivers.  
The Federal Communications Commission must also approve the sale. For more information, click here.
Program helps 9.5 million homes stay warm
Heating AssistanceThe Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) served about 9.5 million homes across the country this year, distributing federal funds to those in need of heating assistance. That's an increase of nearly 25 percent from the record 7.7 million households set in 2009. Washington state applications for assistance were up 42 percent from 2009.
In 2009, about 4.3 million households were disconnected due to inability to pay their bills, up from 4.1 million in 2008.
Don't be left out in the cold, for more information on the LIHEAP program in Washington state, visit www.liheapwa.org. 
Rebates for appliance upgrades
Funds are now available in Washington for consumers ready to upgrade their refrigerator or clothes washer to a more energy-efficient model. To qualify, you must follow specific model requirements and recycling guidelines.
For more information on upgrading, visit http://www.cashforapplianceswa.com/.
Consumer Alert: Don't hire an illegal mover! 
movingAs moving season begins, be sure the moving company you hire is permitted by the UTC. If a company is moving residential household goods within the state, they must have a permit or they are operating illegally and may not have insurance or meet other important safety requirements. If you have a loss or damage complaint against an illegal company, you have little to no recourse in pursuing a complaint.
To ensure the company you hire holds a permit and find out the mover's customer complaint history, call the commission at 1-888-333-WUTC (9882) or visit www.utc.wa.gov/movingtips.
AARP Money Smarts Consumer Events
Want to be a smarter consumer? Join the UTC, AARP, the Attorney General, the Federal Trade Commission and more at a Money Smarts event. Survive and thrive in today's economy at these free public events. Learn how to spend less, save more and outwit the latest schemes and scams.
The first event took place in Seattle in April, but there are upcoming events in Kennewick, Spokane and Lacey. For more information and registration, visit www.aarp.org/wa.
What Can the UTC Do For You? Get Help
Do you need help with: 

When to Call the Commission
Consumer Help Line 
1-888-333-WUTC (9882) 
Find us on Facebook 
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