New Jersey Resources (NYSE: NJR) hosted the company’s 60 th Annual Shareowners Meeting today at the Robert B. Meyner Reception Center, and announced that its principal subsidiary, New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG), will provide a $33.4 million bill credit for residential and small commercial customers for the month of February. The credit will be in effect for natural gas usage between February 1 and 29, 2012, and comes on top of one issued for December and January. Over the three-month period, customers will have saved a total of nearly $91 million. “2012 marks the 60 th anniversary of our company and what better way to kick it off than announcing another bill credit for our customers,” said Laurence M. Downes, chairman and CEO. “Throughout our history, we have made meeting our customers’ expectations for safety, reliability and value our top priority. We are pleased to pass on these savings to our customers and add to our legacy of service. We will continue to monitor the natural gas markets, and look for additional opportunities to save customers on their natural gas costs.” NJNG is able to offer this bill credit to customers at this time as a result of warmer than normal weather in December and January and continued lower-cost wholesale natural gas costs. It will save customers approximately 44 cents per therm, and is based on each customer’s usage during the time it is in effect. A typical residential customer will save a cumulative total of $206 on their December, January and February bills. At current prices, the average customer using 467 therms over the three months would see their bills decrease from $558 to $353, a savings of 37 percent. As it is unknown what market prices will do for the remainder of the winter, a bill credit represents the quickest and most effective way for NJNG to provide the savings to its customers.
During the meeting, shareowners also elected Donald L. Correll, Rev. M. William Howard, Jr., J. Terry Strange and George R. Zoffinger, each for three-year terms, to the NJR Board of Directors, and approved the non-binding advisory resolution approving the compensation of the company’s named executive officers. Additionally, the appointment of Deloitte & Touche, LLP as the company’s independent registered public accounting firm for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2012 was ratified.“We have always measured our success by our ability to meet the needs of a diverse group of stakeholders,” Downes said. “From our Board of Directors to our almost 800 employees, we have an exceptional team dedicated to achieving consistent results for our shareowners. With our 20 th consecutive year of improved financial performance, our 19 th dividend increase in the last 17 years, and the more than 1,700 nonprofit and community groups that we were able to assist this fiscal year, I am pleased, once again, to say that we were able to reward their trust with our performance.” As a part of the company’s commitment to environmental stewardship, the winners of NJNG’s “Kids in Conservation” poster and video contest were announced. The contest, open to students within the utility’s service territory, is designed to engage and encourage students to promote the value of conservation. The 2012 poster contest winners are: Lianna Marcinczuk of West Freehold School in Freehold, Sinduja Sivakumar of Woodmont School in Pine Brook and Reece Goodson of Frog Pond Elementary School in Little Egg Harbor. For their winning design, each student was awarded a laptop computer. The video contest winners were Gabby Maurer, Brian Murphy and Gia Reilly of the Communications High School in Wall, who received $2,500 for their winning submission. Each winning school also received a $1,000 contribution towards an energy conservation or environmental beautification project.