Friday, January 18, 2008

Idaho Power proposes rate hike

Hearing in Twin Falls set for Jan. 31


Idaho Power Co. is proposing to increase electricity rates by an average of 10.35 percent.

The Idaho Public Utilities Commission will conduct three hearings on the proposed rate increase across southern Idaho beginning next week. Hearings are scheduled for Jan. 23 in Boise, Jan. 29 in Chubbuck and Jan. 31 in Twin Falls. All hearings begin at 7 p.m.

The proposed increase varies for customer class.

For residential customers, the proposed increase is 4.5 percent. The company is proposing a 20 percent increase for the irrigation class, 15 percent for industrial and small-commercial customers and 13.1 percent for large-commercial customers.

If Idaho Power's request is granted in full, the average non-summer monthly bill for a residential customer who uses 1,050 kilowatt hours per month will increase from $64.42 to $67.22. An average summer bill would increase from $69.91 to $72.65.

In a press release, the Public Utilities Commission reported that Idaho Power Co. has stated that it must increase its annual revenue by nearly $64 million to recover more than $200 million invested in 650 miles of new distribution and transmission lines and 10 new substations. In addition, the company claims it has spent more than $80 million to maintain its existing lines.

The Public Utilities Commission conducted an audit and examination of Idaho Power's request and filed its comments on Dec. 10, recommending an average 2.8 percent increase. Idaho Power filed rebuttal comments on Jan. 7.

Hearings will be at the following locations: in Boise at the PUC hearing room, 472 W. Washington St., in Chubbock at the Chubbock City Council chamber, 5160 Yellowstone Ave., and in Twin Falls at the Twin Falls City Council chamber, 305 Third Ave. E.

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