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    Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. is planning to raise its customers energy bills with new distribution rates for electricity and natural gas, which would add an extra $11.80 to the average customer's monthly bill.

    According to the Baltimore Sun, the utility says the rate will be needed to upgrade aging infrastructure. If approved by the Maryland Public Service Commission, residents' electricity rates would climb by about $7.20. The move to raise rates may not be at the opportune time for the utility, as it currently facing strong customer feedback after slow response to a major windstorm in July.

    But this was no deterrent for the utility.

    "There's never a good time for a rate increase," said Mark D. Case, vice president for strategy and regulatory affairs. "We are trying to deliver on higher customer expectations."

    Case added that even if the hike is approved, the utility's rates would still be lower than a number of its counterparts.

    Thanks to Maryland's energy deregulation laws, customers can choose which retail energy provider they would like, with the difference between the lowest and highest electricity rates as large as 20 percent.