CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The state Public Service Commission approved a base rate increase for Mountaineer Gas Company that is almost half of what the company had requested nearly a year ago.
On Nov. 4, 2011, Mountaineer Gas sought a 4.9 percent, or $12.2 million, base rate increase that would affect its residential and small commercial customers.
The PSC approved a 2.5 percent, or $6.3 million, base rate increase Wednesday.
The gas company requested approval from the PSC for the change in the base rate -- which is based on the cost to deliver gas to customers, but also said customers' overall gas bill would still remain lower starting Thursday because of earlier decreases.
The company said that its costs to deliver gas -- including general pipeline operations and maintenance, insurance, vehicles, gasoline and other items -- have risen since 2009, when the gas company last requested a base rate increase.
At a June 2012 public hearing in Charleston, Mountaineer Gas customer Ron Jones said he opposed the increase.
Jones had said the increase was merely a way for Mountaineer Gas executives to compensate for revenue lost during a mild winter.