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Business and Economy

State Public Advocate Recommends $1M Penalty Against Maine Electricity Provider

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Darren Fishell
/
BDN
Power lines deliver electricity through Enfield in this September 2017 file photo.

Maine's Office of the Public Advocate is recommending the highest penalty it has ever sought against a Maine electricity provider.

Public Advocate Barry Hobbins says he is asking the Public Utilities Commission to levy at least a $1 million fine, and suspend Electricity Maine's license for one year for allegedly engaging in deceptive and fraudulent marketing practices.

"One agent promised free service for a year,” says Hobbins. “Some agents promised lower rates, despite the fact that Electricity Maine's rates were higher than other available options, including the standard offer."

The recommended penalty now goes to the Public Utilities Commission for consideration. Hobbins expects the PUC to decide on his recommendation within two months.

“This was meant as a wake up call to all the competitive energy providers," he says.

Electricity Maine could not be reached for comment.

Updated 5:21 p.m. Sept. 3, 2019