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Rates go up, bills go down

Tue, Oct 9, 2012

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At today’s city council meeting Colorado Springs Utilities filed a proposal to increase residential, commercial and industrial gas and electric rates, beginning Jan 1, 2013.

Base residential electric rates will increase by 3.5 percent, but the impact on customer bills will be negligible, utilities officials said. That’s because lower prices for coal and natural gas will allow CSU to reduce fuel charges, resulting in a net monthly increase in a typical customer’s electric bill of a mere 8 cents.

The news is even better for natural gas. CSU is proposing a 1 percent rate increase, which will be offset by a fuel cost adjustment which will reduce customer gas bills by 9 percent.

Commercial and industrial customers will also enjoy substantial benefits. Non-fuel charges will increase by 7.64 percent for commercial customers, but fuel costs will decline by 14.45 percent, for a net decrease of 3.53 percent. Industrial customers will see a non-fuel component increase of 5.49 percent offset by 13.77 percent decline in fuel costs, leading to overall cost savings of 3.05 percent.

Those are significant numbers, especially for industrial customers. CSU’s fact sheet notes that the typical industrial bill of $41,421.31 would drop by $1,264.85.

A public hearing on the rate changes has been set for Nov. 13 at City Hall. Copies of the rate filing will be available at the City Clerk’s office and online at csu.org.

CSU’s proposed 2013 proposed budget will also be online. Thanks to fuel cost adjustments, the $1.059 billion budget will be $52 million below last year’s.

 

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