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Letters to the Editor: Gas prices just dropped. Will SoCalGas send us a credit?

A Southern California Gas Co. truck in Cypress on Jan. 6.
(Raul Roa / Los Angeles Times)
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To the editor: My Southern California Gas Co. bill for January just arrived, and it is $768. The bill for the same month in 2022 was $289. My usage for this January was one therm less than in 2022. (“SoCalGas says skyrocketing gas bills will drop significantly in February,” Jan. 31)

A comparison of the two bills showed a small, expected increase in the regular charge per therm. What made all the difference was the add-on “gas commodity” charge, which went from 82 cents per therm in January 2022 to $3.37 last month, a 411% increase.

The wholesale price of gas recently spiked by more than 300% before abruptly falling. If SoCalGas needs to cover such short-term increases with higher customer bills, it must also credit customers when wholesale prices fall.

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I look forward to SoCalGas’ commitment to this policy.

Lawrence Pane, Burbank

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To the editor: While the report that February gas bills will be lower may be technically correct, it misses a major point. For most consumers, the gas bill they will pay in February will be much higher than January, since the February bill is mostly based on the prices for January.

The correct description of the size of the the utility bill is that the gas “for” February will be cheaper than January, not that the bill in February will be cheaper. This minor wording difference might result in a major uproar as people receive enormous bills in the coming weeks.

Keith Price, Los Angeles

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To the editor: What SoCalGas has done to retired people in California is unforgivable.

My wife and I are in our 80s and live in a 1,200-square-foot townhome in Pasadena. SoCalGas sent us a bill for $325. How on Earth can it expect us or anyone else on a limited retirement income to pay that?

We live in a cold place. We are always cold, because our thermostat is set low. SoCalGas is ripping us off, and it should be ashamed.

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Daniel Juhasz, Pasadena

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