Xcel, Centerpoint request rate hikes for natural gas ahead of winter

Two Minnesota utility companies have applied for increased billing rates on natural gas, just as cold weather is setting in across the state.

Xcel Energy and Centerpoint Energy sent in their requested natural gas rate hikes to the Minnesota Public Utility Commission on Wednesday.

Xcel wants a 9.6% increase, which would amount to about $7 a month for the “typical residential gas customer.” Centerpoint sought a rate increase of just over 10% spread out over a two-year period, a change it says would eventually cost households an additional $8.50 a month.

Another utility, Minnesota Power, requested a 12% rate increase on electricity, which would cost customers $11 a month.

The PUC will decide in the coming months whether to approve the rate increases. In the meantime, customers will see an interim rate increase applied to their bill.