SWEPCO Customers to See Sharp Rate Increase

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Southwestern Electric Power Company (SWEPCO), an American Electric Power company, has submitted a request to the Arkansas Public Service Commission (APSC) for a net annual increase of $45.6 million in the company’s non-fuel base rates, plus $12 million for increased vegetation management.

If approved, new rates would likely go into effect in the first billing cycle of January 2020. The combined $57.6 million request would result in an overall bill increase of approximately $22.60 per month, or 24 percent, for an Arkansas residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month.

“We recognize that this increase will impact  individuals, families and businesses. At the same time, we have made significant investments in generation, transmission and distribution facilities since our last Arkansas general rate case in 2009,” said Malcolm Smoak, SWEPCO president and chief operating officer. “We work hard to provide high quality customer service while managing our costs and continuing to invest in the electric system to provide reliable and safe power for Arkansas customers.”

The sharp rate increase has faced opposition, however. Many customers feel that the average increase of $22.60 doesn’t accurately reflect their average monthly bill with a 24 percent rate increase. For example, the average homeowner sees a $150.00 to $200.00 per month electric bill in the summertime. With the rate increase, they will see a $36 to $48 increase per month.

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Tammy Teague

Tammy Teague

Mansfield native, with roots in Scott County. Daughter, sister, wife and Christian. Education: 1995 MHS graduate; 1999 Arkansas Tech University Graduate - BA in Journalism. Career: Managing Editor - The Citizen; Copy Writer - Southwest Times Record; 20+ years experience in the news.

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