CLARKSBURG – Dominion Energy West Virginia filed an application Wednesday with the Public Service Commission asking for an increase in its base tariffs for natural gas service. In the case of the 2018 pipeline replacement and expansion program, the company has committed to filing a base rate case in 2020.
“For generations, DEWV customers have relied on us to provide an affordable, safe and reliable natural gas service to their homes and businesses,” said Jim Eck, vice president and general manager, West Virginia. “We do not take this responsibility lightly and this adjustment to our base rate is the key to our continued ability to deliver on this commitment and expectations.”
If the base rate increase is approved, the monthly bill for a typical residential customer using 6.5mcf per month on average would increase by $ 8.58. The $ 12.17 gross monthly bill increase reflected in the deposit is due to partial offsetting and concurrently changing the PREP rate, the other main component of customers’ monthly bills. The commission is expected to suspend the new rates by procedural order and then the new base rates will come into effect in July 2021.
Since the last rate review, the company has invested in assets and operating resources to serve an expanding customer base; maintain the safety, reliability and efficiency of its system; and meet increasingly stringent requirements for reliability, safety and the environment. About a third of the base rate increase refers to DEWV’s recent acquisition of natural gas collection facilities in order to preserve and improve reliable natural gas service for nearly 10,000 of its current agricultural tap customers – a acquisition previously approved by the Public Service Commission in May 2020.
The proposed base rate adjustment is consistent with increases other West Virginia gas utilities have seen over the past decade. Natural gas continues to be an affordable energy option for Western Virginians. The required increase in Dominion Energy’s base rates is the first in 12 years.
“This rate change reflects the wise and prudent investments DEWV has made over the past decade looking to the future as we sustain our legacy of mountain state service,” said Eck.
As requested by the West Virginia Public Service Commission, Dominion Energy filed its rate application in local newspapers, issued Standard Rate Form 8, provided information directly to customers through bill inserts, and included FAQs online at dominionenergy.com/ west-virginia / rates-and-rates.