Flynn, House Democratic Policy Committee hear testimony on fairness for tenant utility billing

HARRISBURG, Sept. 9 – State Rep. Marty Flynn, D-Lackawanna, and House Democratic Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, held a hearing today on fairness for tenant utility billing.

Flynn requested the hearing on his legislation H.B. 2275, which would ensure fairness for tenant utility billing. Testifiers spoke remotely while members participated in person and remotely.    

“Families and renters in Pennsylvania deserve the comfort in knowing that they are not being overcharged when they pay for utilities,” Flynn said. “With modern metering and billing methods, we can ensure that tenants are not being taken advantage of when they heat, cool or use electricity in their homes.”

Flynn said he introduced the legislation to provide billing methods for renters: ratio utility billing systems and submetering. RUBS is a formula that the landlord uses to determine a flat rate for utilities, which is then included in the monthly rent payment. Alternately, submetering is when each apartment has its own meter for utilities and the tenant pays that amount, either directly to the utility company or to the landlord.

Testifiers included:  
•    Gladys Brown Dutrieuille, chair, Pennsylvania Utility Commission.  
•    Marc Treitler, partner/general counsel, Conservice. 
•    Sabrina Patterson, legal counsel, Conservice. 
•    Michael Housely, president, Legacy Energy (on behalf of the Pennsylvania Apartment Association). 
•    Gale Schwartz, associate director of policy and strategic initiatives, Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania.  

Testimony and full hearing video will be posted at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee.