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APS puts in for $184 million rate hike for late next year

(Storyblocks Images Photo)

PHOENIX – The state’s largest supplier of electricity, Arizona Public Service, has asked to raise rates by $184 million starting late next year.

The public utility put in for the December 2020 increase with the Arizona Corporation Commission last Thursday.

“We prepared this filing with a focus on customers and to meet the energy needs of one of the fastest-growing states in the country,” utility President Jeff Guldner said in an online statement.

The increase would average 5.4% per household.

The company pointed out residential customer rates had been cut “almost 6.5% since January 2018,” saving homes about $120 a year.

But in September, regulators put APS executives on the hot seat, accusing them of scheming to control electricity regulation and that they grew wealthier while some of their customers struggled to pay their bills.

Regulators ordered utilities to stop disconnecting power to customers who hadn’t paid after a 72-year-old woman behind on APS payments died in the heat in Sun City.

A few weeks ago, APS alerted 88,000 delinquent customers that it would begin collecting the $30.6 million in summer utility bills still owed.

Customers who owe at least $75 will be placed on four-month payment plans. They had 30 days to start paying, or lose their power.

APS provides energy for approximately 2.7 million Arizonans.

Rate changes take about a year to go into effect, and require hearings and a vote by the regulators.

Editors note: A previous version of this story listed APS with about 3 million customers.

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