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N. Idaho Power Company Plan Rate Hike

flickr.com, Horia Varlan

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — A power company that serves customers in northern Idaho is asking state regulators for permission to raise rates for residential electricity and natural gas. Officials with Avista Utilities say the price hike is being driven by higher prices for natural gas and increased demand for energy-efficient rebates.

The Spokesman-Review reports the utility is seeking to raise electricity rates by 0.9 percent. The company is proposing a 7.5 percent boost for residential natural gas. The rate increase was filed Wednesday with the Public Utilities Commission, which has final say on utility rate increases in Idaho.

If approved, the total increase in the average residential electric customer bill would be $3.25 a month and $4.11 for natural gas. Avista has about 124,000 power customers in Idaho and 76,000 natural gas customers.

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