Wayne County residents voice frustrations during town hall after going days without power

DTE got an earful from people furious with their performance

DEARBORN, Mich. – The Michigan Public Service Commission is the entity responsible for overseeing Michigan’s utilities.

While it doesn’t run DTE, it does determine whether they can get rate hikes. After the utility’s performance after recent storms, the MPSC got out of Lansing and went on the road for town hall meetings to hear how customers have been affected.

They got an earful from people furious with the DTE’s performance.

“Westland has had 14 outages since 2020, 14,” said Roger Myers.

Congresswoman Debbie Dingell told the commission the status quo is just not working.

“People were scared, and there was real danger,” Dingell said. “We need to start to build our resiliency. It’s getting worse, not better.”

DTE did have its defenders.

Reverend Horace Sheffield tried to speak in favor of the utility but was loudly booed.

“DTE tries to be a good community partner, and I appreciate the things they have done throughout the years,” said La Sed’s Mary Carmen Muñoz.

However, most speakers came to complain about the service they were getting, including a sizable coalition of environmental and social justice groups.

Multiple speakers asked the MPSC to turn down DTE’s request for a rate hike and build more accountability for poor performance. DTE got a $31 million rate hike last year after asking for $331 million. It’s now asking for $622 million.

About the Authors:

Brandon Carr is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with WDIV Local 4 since November 2021. Brandon is the 2015 Solomon Kinloch Humanitarian award recipient for Community Service.