Thursday, February 12, 2009

PULP Utility Law Manual Update

PULP's purposes include education of the public about the legal rights of utility consumers, and to establish a resource center on the legal rights of consumers. Over the years PULP has published a desk reference manual for local legal assistance lawyers and other advocates which covers in considerable detail common legal issues faced by utility customers, and particularly low-income utility and energy customers. In addition to covering the Home Energy Fair Practices Act and telephone consumer protections, the manual topics include assistance programs for utility and energy consumers, utility Lifeline and low-income rates and programs, PSC complaint procedures, rights of water consumers, rights of submetered tenants, and more.

The task of updating the 1995 PULP utility law manual became a casualty of severe state funding reductions, complete elimination of federal Legal Service Corporation grants for all statewide legal aid support programs like PULP, and the consequent retrenchment.

With the support of a recent grant from the New York State Bar Foundation, PULP will complete the updating of its utility law manual for utility consumer advocates. In the coming weeks and months we hope to announce new chapter revisions.

Due to funding limitations, updates to the manual will be issued gradually as chapters are completed, and the manual will not be distributed in hard copy. Look for updates the PULP website online Help Center in the Law Manual section.

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