Ratepayers in Imperial, Nebraska, will be paying more to keep their house warm this winter, after council members from the city approved a rate hike earlier in the week that will raise electricity bills by an average of 3.8 percent, the Imperial Republican reports.
According to the media outlet, the exact new rate will vary depending on whether it is a residential or business electricity bill, however starting in October, the average will be just under 4 percent. After two years, the rates will be reviewed again.
The recent rate hike came after the Nebraska Municipal Power Pool conducted a study to determine the optimal rate that could be charged that would not hurt energy users but would still provide the utility with the funds it needs.
The largest electricity customers in the area will see the smallest price increase, at 2.8 percent. Public Works Superintendent Pat Davison said that many industry leaders expect the rates to remain high in the years to come.
"That trickles down and affects us," he said.
If Nebraska was one of the many states that have passed energy deregulation laws, customers would have the opportunity to compare energy plans side by side and switch to an energy provider that offered the lowest rates.