State Regulators also Agree to County Executive Metzger's Request for Spanish Language Translation at the Hearing
KINGSTON, NY - In response to repeated calls by Ulster County Executive Jen Metzger, the NYS Public Service Commission (PSC) has agreed to hold an in-person public hearing on Fortis/Central Hudson's proposed rate hike in Ulster County, and further agreed to the County Executive's request to make Spanish translation available to ensure equitable participation by the County's Spanish-speaking community. The PSC announced today that a hearing will be held on October 18th at 6pm, and at the suggestion of Ulster County Executive Metzger, the hearing will be held at the County’s Restorative Justice and Community Empowerment Center at 733 Broadway, Kingston, NY 12401. Ulster County Executive Metzger also announced that UCAT will provide a shuttle service to and from the Hannaford shopping plaza for additional parking.
In the County Executive’s September 1 letter to the Commission requesting an in-person Ulster County hearing, she emphasized that certain areas of Ulster County are underserved in terms of broadband access, making virtual hearings inaccessible for some residents. Additionally, older residents and struggling households adversely affected by the utility’s mismanaged billing system may not be able to participate in virtual hearings and deserve a chance to be heard.
"I want to thank the Public Service Commission for its responsiveness to our request," stated County Executive Jen Metzger. "This decision recognizes the challenges faced by underserved areas in terms of broadband access and acknowledges the importance of accommodating older residents and struggling households who have been affected by Fortis/Central Hudson's billing issues. We look forward to broad participation by Ulster County residents and businesses at the in-person hearing to ensure that the Commission understands the unacceptable impacts the proposed rate hike would have on our communities.”
Residents of Ulster County can find more information about the case on the PSC website at www.dps.ny.gov by searching for case numbers 23-E-0418 and 23-G-0419. The official meeting notice can be found at https://documents.dps.ny.gov/public/MatterManagement/CaseMaster.aspx?MatterSeq=71378&MNO=23-E-0418