NEWS RELEASE – HUNTSVILLE UTILITIES
UTILITY RATES ADJUSTMENTS
Tuesday, September 29, 2015 – 4:00PM
Huntsville Utilities wants to inform customers of an upcoming rate adjustment by TVA, a decrease in gas rates, and remind them of the water rate increase.
In December 2012, Huntsville City Council approved a five-step plan for water rate increases from Huntsville Utilities. The fourth step will take effect in October 2015, with the fifth to take effect in October 2016. These rate increases are helping to fund the construction of a new water treatment facility on the Tennessee River, and associated upgrades to the water system. Currently underway, the construction of this facility is ahead of schedule and, when completed, will provide improvements to service while enabling economic development in Huntsville by securing a reliable supply of clean, safe water.
The October water rate and availability charge increase will result in an increase of the average residential bill by around $1.57. The average water customer in Huntsville uses approximately 8,000 gallons per month. Even after the five steps of the planned rate increases, Huntsville will have some of the lowest rates in the region.
Following the recent announcement from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), electricity provider for Huntsville Utilities, TVA’s new strategic pricing plan will adjust retail rates for all customers beginning October 1st. This will increase monthly invoices by an average of 1.5% as this rate adjustment takes effect. Residential customers will notice an approximate $2 increase to the electric portion of their bill compared to the same period last year. Through the TVA Rate Adjustment Addendum, approved to the Huntsville City Council in March 2011, this adjustment increase is a pass-through from TVA and is not designed to produce any additional margin for Huntsville Utilities.
Effective November 1, Huntsville Utilities will decrease natural gas rates by 8% for all residential customers. Residential customers are expected to save nearly $1.45 on natural gas billing compared to winter 2014. Commercial and industrial customers will see a decrease between 6% and 7% depending on customer classification. This is the sixth time since 2005 that Huntsville Utilities has decreased rates for natural gas. All customers will see a small increase in their natural gas availability charge, which is based on customer classification.
Huntsville Utilities is a publicly-owned, not-for-profit utility company providing electric service to over 181,000 customers, water service to over 92,000 customers, and natural gas service to over 51,000 customers in Huntsville and Madison County, Alabama.