Michigan power outages: Public Service Commission holding town halls to hear from impacted customers

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) is hosting town halls to hear from electricity customers who lost power during recent winter storms.

Hundreds of thousands of DTE customers lost power after an ice storm two weeks ago, and some people didn't have power for as long as a week. Then, thousands lost power during a snowstorm that brought down branches and trees last week.

After the first storm, DTE said it would be giving customers who were without power for more than 96 hours a $35 credit.

"We know how exasperating it is to lose power and for it to take days for service to be restored, and we share in the frustrations with the reliability of the state’s power grid," MSPC Chair Dan Scripps said. "The Commission is holding these town halls to give Michiganders a chance to share directly with state regulators their experiences during and after the storms, as well as a chance to hear about what steps the MPSC is taking to address reliability."

Two in-person town halls and one virtual town hall are scheduled:

  • March 20 from noon to 2:30 p.m. at American 1 Credit Union Event Center at 128 W. Ganson St. in Jackson
  • March 20 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Fordson High School’s auditorium, 13800 Ford Road in Dearborn
  • March 2 from 6-8 p.m. on Microsoft Teams (A link to participate through Microsoft Teams will be posted closer to the day of the virtual town hall on the event’s webpage)

Commissioners and MPSC Staff will be at these town halls. Commissioners will give "brief opening remarks on steps the MPSC is taking to upgrade the state’s power grid and make it more resilient against increasingly severe year-round storms that are happening more frequently as the state’s climate changes." After, attendees will be able to share comments.

This week, DTE took the first step toward getting a rate increase approved by the MPSC. For the next 10 months, hearings will be held before the commission decides if it should approve the increase.