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Electricity rate hike could be slightly smaller than Versant requested

Darren Fishell
Bangor Daily News/file

The Maine Public Advocate's office on Monday announced a deal that could take some of the sting out of a rate increase requested by Versant Power.

Ratepayers could see a slightly smaller rate increase than Versant had requested, according to the terms of a settlement filed with the Public Utilities Commission.

Public Advocate Bill Harwood says his office negotiated a deal calling for the increase in distribution rates to come incrementally, in July and January. Combined, the two increases would cost the average residential customer a little more than $10 per month.

Harwood is hoping that the increases will be offset by a drop in the supply portion of electrical bills next year, if natural gas prices continue to moderate.

The deal will require PUC approval. And Harwood says his office is also negotiating with Central Maine Power over a similar rate increase it has proposed.

Murray Carpenter is Maine Public’s climate reporter, covering climate change and other environmental news.