There have been major developments concerning your Ameren natural gas and electric bills. Here’s a summary:
The bad news: Rate hikes!
Earlier this year, Ameren filed for a $46.6 million gas rate hike before the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). Now, it also wants a $71.75 million electric hike. The increases would take effect in January 2019.
The good news: Rate cuts!
- Ameren announced it is cutting rates by more than $65 million ($50 million for electric customers, $15.8 million for gas customers) due to a major tax cut OK’d by Congress last year.Note: CUB and other consumer advocates worked all spring with the utilities and the ICC to get those savings to customers as quickly as possible. .
- Ameren also has announced that electricity prices will drop significantly on June 1. That’s connected to a recent electricity auction that has a key impact on the supply rates for customers in Central and Southern Illinois.Note: CUB and other consumer advocates have fought to reform this market. So we are pleased that Ameren predicts bills could drop by $8 a month for an Ameren supply customer who uses 10,000 kilowatt-hours per year.
The company argues that the rate cuts nullify the impact of the increases. We’re thankful for those cuts, but the real question is: Does Ameren deserve these increases?.