CUB hits the highway to help consumers save

CUB's Outreach Team plans out the month's events.

From left: Environmental Outreach Coordinator Laura Goldberg, Community Technology Liaison Yami Newell, Outreach Coordinator Rajiv Ravulapati, and Outreach Director Sarah Moskowitz.

CUB’s outreach department is no stranger to Illinois highways, logging thousands of miles every year up and down I-55, I-57, I-80 and everywhere in between to spread the word about saving money on utility bills.

Headed by Outreach Director Sarah Moskowitz, the department is made up of Environmental Outreach Coordinator Laura Goldberg, Outreach Coordinator Rajiv Ravulapati, and Community Technology Liaison Yami Newell. They crisscross the state to hold speaking engagements, attend fairs and host utility bill clinics. Last year, CUB’s tiny crew held more than 400 events throughout Illinois.

At these events, the team helps consumers understand and deal with common issues such as choosing an alternative gas or electric supplier and tackling high electric, natural gas and phone bills. One of the most popular events is the utility bill clinic, where the team analyzes utility bills, explains charges, and shows consumers how to cut costs.

“I want to help people understand how they’re billed,” Yami said. “It can get confusing with the differences between the delivery cost, the supply cost and various other fees.”

Laura said she always wants to make sure customers are given information on energy efficiency and how it helps cut costs. That’s why she promotes CUB Energy Saver, a free online service that has been helping people cut utility bills by about $100 a year on average.

Rajiv said he likes customers to leave events knowing how to contact CUB if they have a utility-related problem. More than that, he hopes to give consumers the information they need to deal with utilities on their own. “I want to try to teach customers how to be their own advocates,” he said.

No matter how the utility industry changes, CUB’s outreach team will continue to enjoy traveling Illinois, meeting consumers and helping them in any way possible.

To inquire about scheduling a CUB event, contact Outreach Coordinator Rajiv Ravulapati at 312-263-4282 x. 111, or email rravulapati@citizensutilityboard.org.

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