Albany Times Union: National Grid bills to get a makeover – Utility plans calculator to help customers with switching suppliers

Times Union–National Grid customers could soon find it a lot easier to decide whether it was worth their while to switch to one of the many gas and electric suppliers in the state.

As part of a three-year rate plan the company recently negotiated with state regulatory and business groups, National Grid is proposing to form a “collaborative” that would look into developing a bill calculator and other tools that could help customers figure out if switching is saving them money.

Roughly 20 percent of residential customers take advantage of such suppliers — which offer a variety of products such as fixed rates or renewable energy options not available from National Grid and other utilities. Like every other utility customer, they still pay National Grid’s delivery rates.

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