Atmos Energy rate increase proposal

Amarillo, TX - Atmos Energy customers could be footing higher gas bills soon.

Atmos currently serves three different regions of West Texas and they all pay different gas bill rates. Now, Atmos wants to set one system-wide rate for all of West Texas.

Under an old policy, Atmos Energy and Amarillo had an agreement that took away the need to re-negotiate rates. If Amarillo does not sign on with this new agreement, Atmos could take it to the Railroad Commission. If that happens, it could mean more expenses for taxpayers.

"We could all agree on certain aspects, so every time a renewal came up, we didn't have to go and fight on the same territory back and forth." Amarillo city commission Brian Eades said. "That was really effective and it lowered the cost because these big, long protractive legal battles... that rolls into the cost the consumer pays."

Whenever these issues are taken to the Railroad Commission, more costs come out of the taxpayer's wallet. Atmos hopes to have a new rate in place by this December.