Wis. PSC OKs Eau Claire utility rate hike for 2013

Increase of 6.1 percent for 2013

Wisconsin regulators have approved an increase in electric and natural gas rates for utility customers in western Wisconsin.

The state Public Service Commission Friday approved an electrical rate increase of 6.1 percent in 2013 for Xcel Energy’s Eau Claire-based utility.

The utility had sought an increase in electrical rates of $39.1 million, but was granted an increase of about $35.5 million.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports the PSC decided residential customers would receive a bigger increase of 7.2 percent.

The commission kept the rate hike for large factories to 5 percent and for mid-sized businesses about 5.8 percent.

The commission also approved an increase of 2.5 percent in natural gas rates.

The hike is linked to the utility’s plan to clean up a former manufactured gas plant site in Ashland.