Denver (AP)-Xcel Energy today proposed an 18 percent increase
in natural gas prices for January. The rate increase, combined with higher winter use, is expected to boost the average residential consumer bill to 183–dollars–34 cents, up from 156 dollars 42 cents this month. That's about 60 dollars more than what customers typically paid last January based on the same consumption of 146–point–6 therms. Under the proposal that will be considered by the public utilities commission, Xcel would increase the natural gas commodity price to a dollar and three cents a therm, up from 87 cents a therm in december. Xcel says natural gas prices have been at historically high levels across the country because of tight natural gas supplies.
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