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CFE accused of abuse, city says they’ll keep fighting

Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — Dozens of people have filed official complaints against the high tariffs being charged by CFE.

The Federal Prosecutor’s Office (Profeco) has received 45 citizen complaints in Playa del Carmen for service abuse by the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE). In order for a complaint or set of complaints to be registered as abuse, Profeco says that it needs a minimum of 30 official complaints filed with their department against the same company for the same reasons.

Profeco says CFE customers have filed complaints for increased charges as high as 300 percent since the installment of the company’s new smart meter system.

One local resident, Ignacio Peña, said that his house in Bali has not been lived in for six months and is without electrical consumption, yet CFE charged him nearly 7,000 peso for a service he says he’s not even using. He says he feels the company is charging what they want without establishing actual legal consumption readings.

“They are not alone”, says mayor Cristina Torres Gómez, in regard to those that have been affected with the high tariffs of the Federal Commission of Electricity. She explained that they are fighting to lower electricity rates and that applications have been submitted to the National Water Commission (Conagua), since they are the ones responsible for measuring the average temperature of each city and region (which is how CFE determines tariffs).

“Since the beginning of this administration we have submitted several requests to the Energy Regulatory Commission, who in the end, sets the rate.”

She explained that when it comes to Playa del Carmen, Conagua only has temperature samples as opposoed to actual readings, which is why the city has made an official request to modify the tariffs. She adds that “We have already formally asked Conagua to come and install permanent temperature meters in order to be able to prove to the Energy Regulatory Commission the need to change the tariff.”

Torres Gómez says that City Council offered CFE two temperature modules to be installed in areas with high consumer complaints so that CFE can carry out the pertinent study of each region. One of the modules will be installed next to the sea and another in Villas del Sol.

Profeco says that although many people take to social media to vent their CFE frustrations, it does no good unless people file a complaint, noting Profeco cannot administer consequences without official complaints.