Judge rules fees on East Lansing power bills illegal

Those fees brought in almost $1.5 million in revenue for the city each year.
Those fees brought in almost $1.5 million in revenue for the city each year.
Published: Apr. 5, 2022 at 5:50 AM EDT
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EAST LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - An Ingham County Circuit Court judge has ruled that certain fees, the city of East Lansing charged people living there are against the law.

The fees are called “franchise fees.” They were added to electric bills for East Lansing residents who get their power through the Lansing Board of Water and Light (BWL).

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The fees began being added in March 2017 after a decision by East Lansing City Council. Those fees brought in almost $1.5 million in revenue for the city each year.

The ruling finds that these fees were illegal because they collected money for general public purposes not because the city needed them to pay costs.

The next step is figuring out a plan to refund everyone who has paid these fees for the past five years.

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