Jan. 10, 2023
Contact: Lauren Gold Howland
Public Information Officer
Phone: (562) 355-1201
MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC INVITED TO ASK QUESTIONS, SHARE INPUT
LONG BEACH, CALIF. (JAN. 10, 2023) — The Long Beach Board of Utilities Commissioners will hold a special meeting on Thursday, Jan. 12 to discuss the high cost of natural gas currently impacting all of California.
The meeting will begin at 9 a.m. at the Long Beach Utilities Administration Building, 1800 E. Wardlow Road. Find the meeting agenda here.
Members of the public are invited to attend Thursday’s meeting to share their thoughts and ask questions. Residents can also email comments to email@example.com.
Residents and businesses throughout Southern California are seeing a drastic increase in their natural gas bills this month as global market prices hit a 20-year high.
While winter bills are always higher than in the warmer months, this year’s extreme spike is attributable to historically high market rates for natural gas combined with colder-than-usual temperatures across the western U.S. The average single-family residential customer is likely to see an increase of $200 or more.
Facing the highest natural gas prices in Long Beach’s history, Long Beach Utilities took swift action to mitigate the impact on customers as much as possible. These include:
- Maximizing our withdrawals of less-expensive storage inventory, offsetting gas we would otherwise buy at the market rate
- Invoking a clause in our local gas purchase contract with the State of California, saving $4.5 million for customers
- Applying $1.3 million in reserves to soften impacts to customers
These actions will save customers $10 million and bring the average bill in at about 4 percent less than those of SoCal Gas, which serves the majority of Southern California.
Thursday’s special meeting will be a chance for the Utilities Commission and the public to hear about the factors that have impacted natural gas prices and discuss additional strategies to provide future protection from monthly bill spikes.
Resources are available to help customers manage higher bills, including payment plan options and reduced rates for seniors, those with disabilities and other income-qualified customers. For more information, click here.