Public Service Company (NIPSCO) natural gas customers will see a lower rate
increase than originally proposed in the company’s pending regulatory rate
review, as a result of a collaborative agreement reached with the Indiana
Office of Utility Consumer Counselor (OUCC), certain industrial customers,
and the NIPSCO Gas Supplier Group, NIPSCO announced today.
agreement is subject to Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) review
and approval, and new rates would be phased in over two years with the first
phase occurring in the fourth quarter of 2018, NIPSCO said.
According to NIPSCO,
if the settlement is approved as filed, an average residential customer
would see an overall increase of approximately $8 per month, instead of $10
as originally proposed.
Included within the
overall bill change would be an increase in the fixed monthly customer
charge from $11 to $14, which is also lower than originally proposed.
New rates will
include as well the lower tax rate from federal tax reform, NIPSCO said.
The change for
individual commercial and industrial customers will vary depending on usage
patterns but--on averag--rates for overall commercial and smaller industrial
customers would also increase less than originally proposed.
“This is a great
outcome for our customers, our communities and the company as we continue to
focus on increasing value and service across each of those areas,” NIPSCO
President Violet Sistovaris said. “It also provides a platform for continued
investments in public safety and other programs to better serve customers
now and into the future.”
“It has been more
than 25 years since NIPSCO’s base natural gas rates have increased, and in
2010 a regulatory review led to a slight decrease,” the company said. “Since
that time, NIPSCO has repeatedly been the lowest-cost provider in
Indiana--and among the lowest-cost providers in the nation--while improving
service, reliability and safety to customers. NIPSCO anticipates that, with
the newly proposed rates, it will remain among the lowest-cost providers.”
rates would not be affected by this agreement.