Xcel wants to increase Minnesota residential electricity bills by nearly 20%

October 25, 2021

Star Tribune

Mike Hughlett

Minnesota’s largest electric utility filed its rate case Monday with the state Public Utilities Commission, which must approve it.

Xcel Energy on Monday proposed an electricity rate increase of 21.2%, or $677.4 million, over three years, with just more than half hitting Minnesotans’ pocketbooks in 2022.

With the rate hike, the company’s average residential customers would see a 19% increase in their electricity bills from 2022 through 2024 — or on average $15 to $21 per month cumulatively.

“This is a pretty straightforward rate case,” said Chris Clark, Xcel’s president for Minnesota and the Dakotas. “It’s really focused on the poles and wires part of our business and making the necessary infrastructure investments.”

Minneapolis-based Xcel filed for the rate increase with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, which must approve any increase.

Xcel is by far the state’s largest electricity provide, with 1.3 million customers. Its residential customers have had stable rates for the past two years. The amount of the proposed rate hike, however, could come as a shock.

“To see a rate increase in the neighborhood of 20% — that is really large,” said Annie Levenson-Falk, executive director of the Citizens Utility Board of Minnesota, an advocacy group for residential ratepayers.

She noted, too, that consumers are already being battered by rising energy costs. Escalating inflation in general is affecting costs for food and general household supplies.

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Author: Hannah Hoeger

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