Columbia Gas of Virginia wants to raise base rates for typical customer by 7.5 percent a month

Columbia Gas of Virginia wants to raise base rates for typical customer by 7.5 percent a month

BY GREGORY J. GILLIGAN | Richmond Times-Dispatch

Columbia Gas of Virginia wants to raise its residential base rate to recover costs associated with ongoing infrastructure investment programs.

The increase would mean a typical residential customer could see the base rate rise 7.5 percent, or by $5.61, a month compared with current rates if the proposal is approved by the State Corporation Commission. The new rates would become effective Feb. 1.

The proposal by the Chesterfield County-based company, which has more than 265,000 customers in Virginia, would affect its base natural gas rates, which include costs associated with natural gas delivery, distribution and customer service.

Base rates represent about 60 percent of a typical customer’s total bill. The remaining 40 percent of the bill consists of natural gas costs, which are directly passed through to customers on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

Columbia Gas filed the base rate case Tuesday with the State Corporation Commission seeking $22.2 million per year in additional revenue, primarily associated with its infrastructure investment programs. The company said its capital investments also would bring natural gas to unserved areas and provide infrastructure to support economic growth.

The proposal also incorporates savings associated from the federal tax reform legislation that was enacted late last year. The company’s corporate federal tax rate went from 35 percent to 21 percent on Jan. 1.  Read More >>