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PPL rates drawing attention in Harrisburg

From technical glitches to mysterious usage rates, questions about PPL's billing practices have the attention of lawmakers in Harrisburg.

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Representative Jim Haddock has taken many of the same phone calls that Newswatch 16 has over the past three months.

"The amount of phone calls we got was actually disturbing," said the Democrat from the 118th District.

The callers are PPL customers, homeowners questioning their electric bills. 

First, it was people who saw their electric bills double, sometimes triple, back in January.

PPL chalked that up to a technical glitch and says it was corrected. 

"You know, they were using the terminology that it was 'some' and 'several' billing errors. It was 800,000 bills sent out incorrectly, and Elizabeth, that is just unconscionable."

But now, we're still hearing from people that their bills are off, specifically their electric usage.

Specifically owners of vacant properties who are seeing their electric usage skyrocket for no apparent reason.

We're talking more than 200 percent increases in their usage when no one is even living in the house.

Haddock wants to get to the bottom of it. 

"Do you think that they know what's going on, and they're just choosing to glaze over it? Or do you think they also just don't really know what is happening, and they're still trying to get to the bottom of this? Well, I think PPL is glazing over it. They made light of 800,000 mistakes."

If one investigation doesn't do the trick, perhaps another one will.

PPL's billing practices are already under the microscope by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.

Now, Rep. Haddock is calling for a State House investigation. He says that idea has support from other lawmakers.

"The wheels of justice turn slowly. These wheels are turning. It is not going to be an instant answer."

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