Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Elderly Roosevelt Island Residents Freezing In Their Manhattan Park Apartments Unable To Afford High Electricity Bills, We Need Help Pleads Resident - Building Management Says Con Ed Increased Electricity Rates

Are elderly Roosevelt Island residents freezing in their Manhattan Park 2-4 River Road apartment

because they can't afford the high electricity bills charged by Manhattan Park management?

According to a March 4 Roosevelt Island Daily story:
... "I am a tenant who wishes to remain anonymous. My heating bill has tripled and so has the rest of the building's bills. Apparently management is saying they have to increase our rate. My family members' rent every month is only $139. How am I supposed to pay a $300 electricity bill? Especially when the heaters haven't even been used? It's cold everyday in my home because we don't use the heaters due to the electricity bill being unaffordable. Please help us. The elderly in [deleted] River Rd are so scared on their fixed incomes with rent at $120- $175 and heating bills at $400. Most people don't use the heat. They stop sealing our A.C and won't explain why. So, there's plenty of draft. I write to you at 2am at the age of 72 under 3 blankets and freezing. We need help"....
Click here for full Roosevelt Island Daily story.

2-4 River Road is the affordable housing component of the Manhattan Park buildings complex with many elderly and low income residents.

Winter storm is coming tomorrow.
In response to my inquiry, Roosevelt Island's NYC Council Member Ben Kallos replied:
No one should be freezing in their own apartment in this City. Our Office is working to get in contact with the residents referenced in the story. Once that occurs we will do our best to get them the help they need through the City's resources.
According to a spokesperson for Manhattan Park management:
Management understands how fluctuating heating costs can impact monthly household budgets, especially for those living on a fixed income.

But electricity prices are set by Con Edison, the local utility provider for the property. Unfortunately, Con Edison increased their rates significantly during the last billing cycle due to the extremely cold weather at the beginning of the year, impacting all New Yorkers.

To help keep electric costs down, we purchase electricity from Con Edison at a bulk reduced rate that we pass through to the residents of 2-4 River Road, without any additional charges. Further, residents in the affordable units receive a flat monthly utility allowance set by HUD, which throughout the year often exceeds their energy consumption.

We also offer our residents a level payment plan option, which spreads electricity costs over the full year. But with the coldest months likely behind us we are hopeful that electricity rates will return to a more normal range on the next billing cycle, and remain more constant throughout the year.
Very high electricity charges are a long time issue for many Manhattan Park residents as seen from this 2013 post.