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Complaints against Wash. energy firms up 35% in ’09

The Columbian
Published: March 9, 2010, 12:00am

Consumer complaints against regulated energy companies in Washington increased 35 percent in 2009, while telecommunications complaints dropped 20 percent, state regulators reported Monday.

The state Utilities and Transportation Commission help line opened more than 900 complaints against regulated electric and natural gas companies for customers with billing disputes, disconnect threats, customer service issues and other concerns. The UTC received about 800 consumer complaints against telephone companies in 2009.

Rounding out the top three was the solid waste industry. More than 120 consumers filed complaints against regulated garbage and recycling companies in 2009. In 2008, telecom companies topped the list with more than 1,000 consumer complaints.