AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Xcel Energy has filed a rate review seeking an increase of 6.5 percent in annual revenues to recover close to $1.7 billion invested in the regional grid since mid 2017.
According to a news release, fuel cost savings will more than offset the annual cost of Xcel Energy’s investment in the new Hale Wind Project. However, continued upgrades to the region’s electric transmission and distribution systems will lead to higher rates for Texas customers in 2020.
The company filed the rate review on August 8, which will only affect the base rate portion of the customer bill that accounts for 80 percent of monthly residential costs.
“We’ve made significant investments in system reliability and new generation facilities that deliver clean, affordable energy,” said President of Xcel Energy Texas David Hudson. “These investments build in long-term savings that will keep increases close to the rate of inflation over the long term.”
If the new proposed rates are put into effect, residential customers using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month could see an increase of $14.99. However, Xcel Energy says that the proposed increased rates will still be less than one percent more than overall rates in 2017.
In June, Xcel announced that residential bills would decrease by five percent this summer due to the lower natural gas prices. In July, Xcel filed a rate review to increase rates for New Mexico customers.
The company says the primary driver in the proposed increase is the large investment in new transmission lines and substations across the system that make the grid more reliable.
Even at the proposed rates, Xcel Energy’s prices will remain below the national average.