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Possible rate increase in store for IID customers

The Energy Consumer Advisory Committee recommended a rate increase for the Imperial Irrigation District. If approved, the average price hike will be 7.4 percent.

Magdalena Pinson owns Mexico Tipico Restaurant in Indio. For just one month, her electric bill totaled $2,377. She said she can’t afford to pay much more.

“It’s going to be very difficult not only for my business, but for a lot of people too,” said Pinson.

If approved by the IID Board, the price of power would rise between six percent and just over nine percent for businesses. In addition, it would increase nearly eight and a half percent for households.

People we talked to did not seem electrified by the news.

“We already pay a large amount for our electricity here and I think eight percent is a big jolt,” said Gail Waters of La Quinta.

IID provided the following statement:

IID recently conducted a comprehensive cost-of-service study to review the proper balance our rate structures. As a result, our board is currently reviewing a proposed overall average rate increase of 7.4 percent. The board is expected to take action on the proposal at its regularly scheduled meeting onNovember 18. If approved, the new rates would be effective in January.

Like most utilities, IID has been confronted with increasing costs associated with providing electric service to its customers, while complying with many state and regulatory mandates. Also contributing to the escalation of costs are the requirements of reducing carbon emissions, satisfying renewable portfolio standards, supporting the advancement of the regional economy and implementing a transmission strategy that facilitates the development of renewable energy resources and the export of those resources to other parts of California.

Even with the proposed rate increase, IID will remain competitive in comparison to our neighboring utilities. IID’s charge to a residential customer using the same amount of energy is 23 percent less than Southern California Edison. In addition, the proposed rate increase will be lower than the average rate charged to customers in 2011.

For more information, please visithttp://spamaway.npgco.com/canit/urlproxy.php?q=aHR0cDovL3d3dy5paWQuY29t&r=YmFzZQ%3D%3D, or contact IID’s Rates Section at1-760-339-9873.

Even with the price increase, IID customers like Thomas Sweet of Thousand Palms will still pay 23 percent less than Southern California Edison customers.

“I used to live in Palm Springs and during the summer the power bill is notably less with IID,” said Sweet.

IID hasn’t raised rates in 20 years. Customers hope it stays that way.

“I hope that they don’t increase rates,” added Pinson.

IID will revisit the possibility of a rate increase on November 18th and possibly take action at that time.

KESQ News Team

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