NC regulator considers another Duke Energy rate hike request

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina regulators are considering raising electricity rates on an additional 2 million Duke Energy customers by more than 11 percent.

The state Utilities Commission on Monday began considering the company's request to charge an extra $539 million a year to customers of its Duke Energy Carolinas subsidiary in central and western North Carolina. The Charlotte-based company says that translates into a 14 percent increase for the typical residential customer's $104 monthly bill.

The commission's hearing in Raleigh comes after it last month allowed a 7 percent rate increase on Duke Energy Progress customers, an amount reduced for four years as state income tax savings are returned.

The commission will again decide how much of the billion-dollar costs of cleaning up toxic coal ash will be passed along.

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