Chicago-Area Gas Companies Seek Rate Hike

February 19, 2011

Chicago residents may soon be paying more for the delivery of their natural gas.

Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas are both seeking an increase in the amount they charge their customers to deliver natural gas.

Unfortunately, the delivery charge is about 40 percent of a Peoples Gas customer’s bill and about 30 percent of the bill for North Shore Gas customers.

gas burnerThe companies, subsidiaries of the Integrys Energy Group, filed rate-increase requests with the Illinois Commerce Commission this week as the first step in an 11-month regulatory review process.

If approved, the monthly bills for a small residential Peoples Gas customer would go up about $9 per month, or about $108 extra per year.

North Shore Gas customers would see an increase of about $3 per month or about $36 a year.

“We understand many of our customers are struggling with rising costs just as our company is grappling with the ever- increasing costs of doing business,” said Will Evans, Jr., president of Peoples Gas and North Shore Gas. “The proposed rate adjustment we are seeking for the company is vital in order to access the capital necessary to continue investing in the safety and reliability of its infrastructure.”

Peoples Gas serves approximately 817,000 residential commercial and industrial customers in the city of Chicago.

North Shore Gas provides natural gas delivery to approximately 158,000 customers in Northeastern Illinois.

Both companies just secured rate hikes about a year ago from the ICC that added an average of $48 a year to Peoples Gas bills and $66 a year for North Shore Gas customers.

If the new rates are approved, the earliest they would take effect would be January of 2012.

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