Monthly Archives: May 2009

Federal Court Invalidates AT&T “Class Action Waiver” in Wireless Contract Boilerplate

Several people joined together to bring a class action suit against AT&T Wireless following its merger with Cingular in 2004. The complainants, AT&T Wireless customers, alleged that after Cingular merged with AT&T Wireless in October of 2004, Cingular deliberately degraded AT&T Wireless’ network in order to induce AT&T Wireless customers to transfer their plans to Read more…

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PULP Analyzes DHCR Submetering Rent Adjustments in Rent Stabilized Housing

The New York State Department of Housing and Community Renewal (“DHCR“) oversees rent regulated residential housing. When a rent-regulated landlord is allowed by the PSC to submeter electricity, and begins to charge tenants separately for the electric service based on usage measured by a submeter, the landlord must simultaneously lower the rent, which previously included Read more…

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Submetering Summit

On Saturday, May 16 tenant leaders, legislators, state agency representatives (from the PSC, DHCR, and NYSERDA) and PULP met for nearly five hours to discuss electricity submetering issues and problems. Present at the Submetering Summit were tenant association leaders from buildings with a total of more than 25,000 tenants. Elected officials who attended and spoke Read more…

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All NY Phone Customers Lose Big $$ Due to PSC Lifeline Policies

You’ve seen the numbers: Lifeline discount telephone service subscribership in New York State has plummeted from a peak of over 756,000 in 1996 to about 300,000 today. Meanwhile the number of households receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits (Food Stamps) across the state – one of several categorical eligibility qualifications for Lifeline – now exceeds Read more…

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PSC Approves Increase for Niagara Mohawk Gas Customers; Defers Consideration of Affordability for Low-Income Customers

On May 15th, the New York PSC issued an Order adopting the Proposal for settlement of the Niagara Mohawk (National Grid) request to raise its natural gas delivery rates. All of the parties to the proceeding — including National Grid, Department of Public Service (“DPS”) Staff, Multiple Intervenors, the United States Department of Defense, the Read more…

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PULP Comments on PSC Proposals to Implement 2% Utility Assessment

On April 28th, the New York State Public Service Commission (“PSC”) issued a Notice Requesting Comments following the passage of a state law establishing a Temporary State Energy and Utility Service Conservation Assessment, effective April 1, 2009 to March 31, 2014. The Temporary Assessment is applicable to public utility companies, including municipal gas and electric Read more…

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New York HEAP Program Closes Today

The New York Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (“HEAP”) will close today for both Regular HEAP and Emergency HEAP. Unlike some other states, New York does not supplement the HEAP program when federal funds are depleted. Section 97 of the Social Services Law provides that No person, however, shall be certified as eligible for and Read more…

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FCC Acts to Protect VoIP Customers from Providers Going out of Business

Recognizing that consumers increasingly use interconnected Voice over Internet Protocol (“VoIP”) service as a replacement for traditional voice service and that consumers’ expectations for this type of service trend toward their expectations for other telephone services, the FCC acted on May 13th to protect VoIP consumers from the abrupt discontinuance, reduction, or impairment of their Read more…

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Submetering Challenged at Claremont Gardens in Ossining

A tenant has filed a petition with the New York PSC seeking to vacate the submetering order for Claremont Gardens, a former Mitchell-Lama housing project in Ossining, N.Y. In September 2006 the PSC issued an order allowing submetering of electricity at Claremont Gardens, granting the petition of a consultant who frequently files petitions on behalf Read more…

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