MetroNews staff photo

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — West Virginia’s AARP is shocked by the level of increase being proposed by Appalachian Power and Wheeling Power.

“We understood a revenue increase would be coming,” said Tom Hunter with AARP. “When we saw the number, 226-Million, it took our breath.”

Hunter said his organization expected a rate hike in the wake of the damages from the 2012 Derecho, Super Storm Sandy, and the new requirements for tree trimming, but  believes the company missed the mark on a reasonable level for increase.

“I think we understand the challenges utility companies are facing,” said Hunter. “With that said, AARP’s focus is on what constituents are paying and whether that’s fair and reasonable.”

He said for many in West Virginia, the hit would be catastrophic to their household budget.

“The average yearly Social Security benefit for a West Virginia retiree is just a little over $14,000,” said Hunter. “You look at the possibility one bill could be increasing by $240 each year, where do you take that money out of your budget?”

AARP West Virginia will be engaging members and all West Virginians to become involved in the public hearing process as the PSC makes the decision on whether the 17 percent rate hike is allowed to stand or if it will be a far lower figure.

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  • Pamela Wells

    The 17% rate hike is much too high. Over time a 2% hike would pay for the damages and the tree trimming. I still remember when electric companies trimmed trees every year as a matter of course. If it had been done all along it would not be so expansive now. It is not the job of THE PEOPLE to make sure there is profit made from our electricity!!!

  • Buck

    Not to always the unwashed, uneducated, unemployed, low info liberals will receive gubmint subsidies to help with their bill.

  • JRC

    What do you expect AARP? When you backed obama, you backed his war on coal and on our healthcare. Now we all will pay the price! How stuped can you be?

  • John of Wayne

    Hey, AARP, nice job on running the play book but your feigned concern for retirees is as transparent as that of your Messiah, Obama.

  • Mike

    AARP,just another name for Obamacare.

  • thornton

    The sound of speaking the acronym AARP correctly defines my opinion of them.

  • Pickle Barrel

    Stop your whining, AARP. For many in America, the cancellation of their health plans due to Obamacare was catastrophic as well. You supported Obama and helped get this disaster crammed down the throats of your members.

  • FungoJoe

    Obama's War on Seniors is getting ramped up. Seniors cannot afford to foot the bill for Obama's faux science Climate Change initative. And when ObamaCare gets into full swing with their rationed health care & death panels, it'll be too late for the senior citizens then. AARP, you get what is coming to you for endorsing Obama the Criminal.

    • Jephre

      +1, Fungo.

    • Damion45

      Indeed. They cut the deal with Obama on healthcare and are going to make out like bandits. Just like the union miners, the seniors are being sold down the river. The only good news is that some of those who have been sleepwalking are beginning to wake up. Unfortunately, every day it goes on, it will be harder to stop.

  • Todd

    Elections have consequences AARP. You endorsed this mess.

  • jfk

    they always ask for more than they want and "their" psc ends up giving them what the really expected to get (not need mind you) and everyone is supposed to be happy because they didn't get what they asked for. Why don't the utility company's insure their property IE power right of ways so that if a bad storm hits their covered. We all call it homeowners insurance. Or maybe they do and are double dipping!

  • Jason R.

    Perhaps AARP should take a look at Obama's energy and environmental policies and what they're already costing citizens instead giving him a free pass on everything.