Utilities Commission seeking testimony on electric and natural gas rate increases

By Reader Staff

The Idaho Public Utilities Commission will host customer hearings in late July to take testimony on applications from Avista to increase rates for natural gas and electric service throughout the North Idaho region. 

Avista is asking for approval to increase base rates for natural gas customers and electric customers in 2023 and 2024. Under the terms of a proposed settlement involving parties in the case, natural gas customers would see an increase of approximately 2.7% beginning Sept. 1, 2023, and an additional increase of 0.01% beginning Sept. 1, 2024. 

The Avista building in Spokane. Courtesy photo.

Electric service customers would see an increase of 8% beginning Sept. 1, 2023, and an additional increase of 1.4% beginning Sept. 1, 2024.

The commission may approve the proposed settlement, deny it or modify it.

Customer hearings will be held in Sandpoint, Coeur d’Alene and Lewiston. Those attending the hearings in person will have the opportunity to submit testimony for the record. The hearings may be listened to by calling in, but testimony will not be accepted over the phone.

The Sandpoint hearing will take place Wednesday, July 26 at 11 a.m. at the Sandpoint Community Hall (204 South First Ave.). It will conclude at 2 p.m. or after all customer testimony has been received, whichever comes first. Those interested in listening to the hearing can call 1-415-655-0001 and enter meeting number 2631 407 0012 when prompted.

Written comments on the proposed settlement are being accepted until July 26. Comments are required to be filed using the commission’s website or by email unless computer access is not available. 

To comment using the website, visit puc.idaho.gov. Click on the “Case Comment Form” link on the upper left side of the page. If commenting on the proposed natural gas rate increase, use case number AVU-G-23-01. If commenting on the proposed electric rate increase, use case number AVU-E-23-01. 

Emailed comments should be directed to the PUC secretary and Avista: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected]. 

To mail comments, address them to: Commission Secretary, Idaho Public Utilities Commission, P.O. Box 83720, Boise, ID 83720-0074; Public Utilities Commission, 11331 W. Chinden Blvd. Building 8, Suite 201-A, Boise, ID 83714; David J. Meyer, Esq., Avista Corporation, P.O. Box 3727, 1411 E. Mission Ave., Spokane, WA 99220-3727; and Patrick D. Ehrbar, Avista Utilities, P.O. Box 3727, 1411 E. Mission Ave., Spokane, WA 99220-3727

Additional information on Avista’s applications is available at puc.idaho.gov/case/Details/6971 or puc.idaho.gov/case/Details/6970.

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