Maine isn’t a bunch of rich people. Energy poverty is a real factor.

Central Maine Power isn’t the only enemy of the impoverished electricity consumers who are finding it impossible to keep up with monthly power bills.

A recently opened case before the Public Utilities Commission involving sudden, higher-than-ordinary bills contains startling comments from 278 customers finding themselves unable to believe the cost of electricity. Surely, there are many more shocked and dismayed people with high power costs who haven’t provided their comments to this case.

Is the Maine Legislature unaware of this growing problem? Do they all think it must be CMP’s fault and that by attacking this electricity distributor, the problem bills will magically go away?

It is now an emergency situation and calls for an emergency response.

The legislators are very aware of the Efficiency Maine Trust and the revenue the trust receives from the system benefit charge, a parasite attachment raising the bills of the poor and not-so-poor.

But are they aware that Efficiency Maine is playing the ISO-New England Forward Capacity Market with this revenue to enrich itself with an additional $13.89 million while the poorest among us struggle with a crippling $150-per-year addition to their bills? The $13.89 million is what the market saves when Efficiency Maine clients use more-efficient electrical devices; this money is remitted not to the clients, but to Efficiency Maine Trust.

The right thing to do now is to eliminate the system benefit charge. Allow Efficiency Maine to retain the $13.89 million to administer programs that will benefit the poor, who need help with energy poverty.

Efficiency Maine has benefited the not-so-poor long enough.

Clayton McKay

Dixfield