State regulators on Monday approved new rules to protect consumers from receiving extremely high bills due to broken or inaccurate meter readings. The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission adopted rules to limit the time a regulated energy company can issue a retroactive bill to six months, and to require regulated energy companies to identify and correct certain billing errors within sixty days. These rules aim to reduce the amount customers are inaccurately billed and prevent them from having to repay large amounts of money to the utility. “Burdening an unsuspecting consumer with a bill going back several years is unacceptable,” UTC Chairman David Danner said in a press release. “The new rules will prompt companies to identify these issues quickly and ultimately reduce the number of, and amount on retroactive bills.” The rules also require utilities to develop and maintain procedures for prompt identification, repair, and replacement of inaccurate and broken meters. The UTC is the state agency that regulates private, investor-owned electric and natural gas utilities in Washington. It is the commission’s responsibility to ensure regulated companies provide safe and reliable service to customers at reasonable rates, while allowing the utility the opportunity to earn a fair profit.