The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission has approved anexpansion of Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania’s customer choice pilotprogram to include 270,000 residential and small-commercialcustomers in south-central and western Pennsylvania, or about 70%of the company’s customers.

Columbia, which already offers supplier choice in Allegheny andWashington counties, will expand its program to Beaver and Butlercounties in western Pennsylvania and to Adams, Franklin and Yorkcounties in south-central Pennsylvania. Customers will beginshopping for a new supplier next month and will start receiving gasfrom their new supplier in November. Columbia’s supplier-choiceprogram saved 37,000 participating customers in Washington andAllegheny counties $2.4 million from November through June,according to a company survey. Customers saved an average of about$8 a month, or 8.16% less than what they would have paid had theypurchased their natural gas from the utility last winter.

©Copyright 1998 Intelligence Press Inc. All rights reserved. Thepreceding news report may not be republished or redistributed, inwhole or in part, in any form, without prior written consent ofIntelligence Press,Inc.