Seattle utility City Light had long been hoping the Seattle City Council would approve a proposal to raise electricity rates through a two-year program, and the company got its wish on September 17 when the 10 percent rate hike was passed.
According to The Seattle Times, the higher electricity rates will impact different customers in a variety of ways, however residential customers will likely feel the brunt of the increase, while business electricity rates will be less impacted.
Beginning next year, rates will be tied to the actual cost of providing service, which hasn't been assessed since the utility did so in 2006. By 2013, the average residential customer will pay about 6.8 percent more, making a typical household's annual bill about $40 more.
"This proposal, while it means a near-term dip in Boeing's power costs, is an initial step toward that goal," said Susan Bradley of Boeing. "There's much more work to do, and we look forward to working with all parties as we progress toward a sustainable, balanced solution."
Residents in states with energy deregulation laws in place, including Pennsylvania, Illinois and Ohio, can shop around for electricity rates if such an increase is passed. This has created highly competitive energy markets in these states, which have kept electricity rates lower.