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Retired Lawyer argues case before Department of Public Utilities

Brian Michael Olmstead argues against National Grid in a hearing with the DPU

By Andrew Martasian
On March 1, 2012


Retired lawyer Brian Michael Olmstead argued that proper regulations were not followed when National Grid terminated his service in September 2004.

At an adjudicatory hearing with the Department of Public Utilities today, Olmstead alleged that between 2001 and 2004, National Grid did not investigate several complaints he filed regarding his billing.

According to Massachusetts law CMR 25.00, "no disputed portion of a bill which relates to the proper application of approved rates and charges…shall be considered ‘due' during the pendency of any complaint."

"My deep abiding objection is to how my government has acted," said Olmstead in his opening argument. Olmstead also called the Department of Public Utilities "an assistant to National Grid," because of their failure to enforce regulations.

Camal Robinson, one of the lawyers representing National Grid acknowledged that National Grid did not follow proper procedure when shutting off Olmstead's power. However, it "was appropriate to terminate service."

Olmstead also argued that National Grid should not have changed his service rate from residential to commercial because Olmstead the only people living at his home were family members and one friend of the family.

According to Olmstead, he only found out about the rate change when he looked over one of his bills.

Olmstead said he hopes the one day hearing, which will continue for the rest of today to bring about "a return to justice."


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