Missouri Gas Energy will ask state regulators to approve an increase to delivery charges that will, on average, increase a residential customer’s monthly bill by $5.50.
MGE plans to formally submit its increase to customer delivery charges to the Missouri Public Service Commission on Tuesday afternoon; it could take 11 months before a final decision is made.
Tuesday’s delivery charge proposal is MGE’s first such request in four years.
Steve Lindsey, CEO of MGE, said even if the Public Service Commission approves the utility’s entire request, customers will still pay on average less than they were a decade ago.
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“Customers will be paying 11 percent less now on a go forward basis than they were 10 years ago,” Lindsey said in an interview with The Star.
Part of the lower bills over the last decade is due to the expansion of natural gas availability with the discovery of shale reserves in the Northeast United States and elsewhere.
Delivery charges are a separate line item on a customer’s bill and reflect the cost associated with operating and maintaining natural gas pipelines. Delivery charges are distinct from what customers pay for the amount of natural gas they use.
Lindsey said MGE has made substantial infrastructure and technology upgrades, including customer service through mobile technology that’s set to debut this fall.
Lindsey added that MGE has replaced more than 250 miles of natural gas pipelines since the utility last requested an increase in delivery charges.
MGE is owned by LaClede Gas Company, which is a subsidiary of Spire Energy, a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange.