House Republican Leader Matt Hall, R-Richland Township, on Friday issued the following statement after the Michigan Public Service Commission authorized DTE Energy to raise rates on customers by $368 million — a 6.4% increase.
“DTE’s $368 million electric rate increase on Michigan residents and job providers is nothing compared to what’s coming down the pipeline next. The utilities will collect a windfall under Democrats’ energy mandates that became law this week. These mandates require big electric companies to close reliable natural gas power plants and spend massive sums on green technology, and then they’ll pass all the costs on to their customers — thanks to Democrats repealing a cap on excessive rate hikes. Families across Michigan will see their home electricity bills jump upwards while the utility companies line their pockets.”
DTE said it needed the rate increase in part to comply with the state’s existing clean energy goals — requirements much smaller than Democrats’ new clean energy mandates. The “100% clean energy” laws Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed this week will effectively ban natural gas power plants by requiring expensive, impractical technology, instead shifting to more wind and solar, which are less reliable power sources than natural gas. The bills repealed a rate cap, a move that will allow utilities to pass on 100% of the green energy implementation expenses to ratepayers.
“As Michigan struggles to grow, the governor just wants to slap a Band-Aid on our economy while ignoring the deep-seated problems that Democrat policies have exacerbated,” Hall said. “Our state needs to strengthen our economy by lowering our taxes and fostering a fair, reasonable regulatory environment that makes sense for Michigan workers and small businesses.”
“Speaker Tate still refuses to admit that the House is in shared power, but he’s feeling its effects as House Republicans rack up wins each time Democrats move our way. But even as Republicans secure victories, Democrats are blocking progress on the pressing issues facing Michiganders.”