HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - Connecticut’s Senate unanimously passed a bill aimed at changing the way utility companies are regulated.
The Senate passed the bill in a 35-0 vote on Thursday.
It's one of 10 bills it took up on Thursday.
The state House of Representatives voted on them on Wednesday.
The big item on the House's Wednesday agenda was the bill called “Take back our grid.”
Around 10:30 p.m., the House of Representatives overwhelming passed it.
Lawmakers spent hours debating it.
BREAKING: CT House of Representatives overwhelmingly passes bill changing the way utility companies like Eversource and UI are regulated- transitioning to a performance- based system, and giving customers refunds after 96 hours of outages. pic.twitter.com/sKPPqWzVMU— Sharon Johnson (@sharon_johnson5) October 1, 2020
The legislation is aimed at changing how utility companies are run, create more transparency and improve how storms are handled.
It transitions utility companies to a performance-based system and gives refunds after 96 hours of outages.
"This bill was born out of what I would call the perfect storm," said Rep. Charles Ferraro.
It would also limit profits made by utility companies, it gives state regulators more time to review rate hikes, and would give refunds to customers who lose food or medication because of an extended power outage.
This is in direct response to Tropical Storm Isaias in August and intense criticism over huge power outages that lasted for days.
"We believe some of these changes are going to change the way they respond to storms and say we have to respond very, very quickly or else," said Rep. Matt Ritter.
Lawmakers passed the bill 136 to 4.
Some of the other bills in this week's special session deal with cleaning up and redeveloping brown sites, which are sites in the state that are contaminated.
There’s also a bill to address funding for school construction projects.
The Senate will take up the "Take back our grid" and other bills on Thursday. There could be another session Friday.