Luverne power customers’ bills to drop

Published 11:03 pm Wednesday, January 26, 2011

While Luverne residents’ electric rate will go up next month, it won’t show up on their bill — in fact, overall electric bills should drop.

The Luverne City Council discussed the rate increase at Monday’s meeting, and the new rate is set to go into effect on Feb. 1, which will show up on the March bill.

Despite that, residents should see their bill drop by around $2 for the first 1,000 kilowatt hours of usage.

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That’s because there are three main parts to a Luverne electric bill: a base charge of $5.50, the electric usage charge and a fuel adjustment charge.

Although the electric rate is jumping from $0.0638 per kilowatt hour to $0.07178, the fuel adjustment charge is dropping from $0.02 to $0.01 for an overall decrease.

“The fuel charge generally drops as reservoirs fill up and the cost of natural gas power goes down,” said mayor Joe Rex Sport.

An electric rate increase was handed down from the Alabama Municipal Electrical Authority last summer, but the city chose to temporarily absorb the cost.

When the city was notified of another rate increase on the way, it chose to enact both at the same time.

“We didn’t want to have two rate increases in one year, so we waited until we got the second to increase cost,” Sport said. “I don’t think people will see a significant change in their bill.”