Mar 16, 2010 8:54 AM by Associated Press
Denver residents could see their electricity rates increase by an average of about $5.18 a month under a proposed hike by Xcel Energy.
The proposed increase announced Monday by the utility would also raise electric bills for Xcel's small-business customers by an average of about $9.21 a month.
Xcel says the total rate increase of about $52.7 million, or about 8 percent, is necessary to cover the increased costs of natural gas and higher demand for power during the winter.
The proposed increase needs to be approved by the Public Utilities Commission at the end of March for the rates to go into effect April. 1.
Minneapolis-based Xcel is Colorado's largest electric utility with 1.4 million customers.