Minn. wants to slash CenterPoint's natural gas rate hike in half

  • Article by: David Shaffer , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 26, 2013 - 9:07 PM

CenterPoint wants an 87 percent increase in the basic gas charge. The Minnesota Commerce Department says 19 percent is more reasonable.

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hahatsktskNov. 26, 13 4:02 PM

Are we suppose to pay for improvements while CenterPoint reaps the rewards? We need other options for utilities. Why do 2 companies have Mpls by the neck? One gas and the other electricity? What happened to the days when companies paid for their own improvements and upgrades? What do they do with the profits?

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fishanhunt2Nov. 26, 13 4:06 PM

Refunds? Why not hold off rate hikes until proven valid? When you have a monopoly I guess you can ask for what you want, not what you need.. The requested rate hike does appear excessive.

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mnfishNov. 26, 13 4:11 PM

I'm not holding my breath for that refund check. Monopoly industries at it's finest. Introduce competition in this state and watch rates fall.....not get slashed.....but fall.

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sharklasersNov. 26, 13 4:23 PM

Well, when our government allows monopolies, what do people expect? While it is good that we have a board that can push back on rate increases for gas and electricity, the better solution would be competition.

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lostinstpaulNov. 26, 13 4:49 PM

MN keeps mandating alternative energy, and utility companies have to raise rates to meet new regulations - MN has so many regulations, its sad. MAybe reduce MN's role in regulating the life out of everything, and companies could do business without the threat of Govt hanging over them. Did you read how the state is saying they only need to make a certain amount, and their forcasts didnt count? Now the Govt decides what a company can make (while it gave them a monopoly?)

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robotdudeNov. 26, 13 4:55 PM

Competition - yep, sounds good except for...INFRASTRUCTURE! Ever seen any of those old photos of NYC when they had many phone companies? Telephone poles and lines everywhere. Sometimes monopolies are necessary. How much would it cost to install separate pipes or electric lines for every house in Mpls, not to mention substations, main gas and valves along with the necessary staff that maintains and fixes them in emergencies. We're not talking about a cable or phone company that can string in the extra lines a lot less expensively or share lines and billing easily. The other answer is to let the city purchase the assets and run the utilities. I can't even imagine the cost of that which would surely be born by the ratepayers. And having the government run it? Get serious, look at how unpopular recent projects have been jammed down our throats. When it comes to gas and electric, I want the experts running it, not bureaucrats.

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blorangeNov. 26, 13 5:00 PM

Now the Govt decides what a company can make (while it gave them a monopoly?) Isn't this the point? In exchange for centerpoint having sole access to Minneapolis they have to bargain with the city directly.

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tkr380Nov. 26, 13 5:29 PM

Open up to competition instead of back slapping Government employees with a wink and nod telling the gas company to "double what you want so we can look good when we cut your request in half" and then don't forget to invite us to that energy conference in Hawaii.

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FrankieNov. 26, 13 6:08 PM

Why not slash out tax rates in half?

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rayk1800Nov. 26, 13 6:19 PM

Centerpoint is expanding it's business outside of Minnesota and it sounds like they want ratepayers to help fund it. That's not the job of the ratepayer. CNP already issued equity that hit the shareholder . Thanks CNP.

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