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UES seeks rate increase for reliability improvements

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Unisource Energy Services (UES) has invested more than $157 million into new power production resources and a more reliable distribution system since 2009. However, the utility's current rates do not reflect these investments.

UES' total electric rates lag behind its service costs. UES' current rate structure is based on costs incurred by the company in 2008, contributing to the fact that the utility's electric rates are far below its service costs. Operating costs have increased and sales have remained flat.

UES has filed a proposal with the Arizona Corporation Commission to increase electric rates, meaning an extra $3.60 per month to a customer's bill. The 4.4 percent increase would cover the investments, and help the utility build upon the improvements, including creating energy-efficiency programs. The company's current rates are among the lowest in the state and benchmarks for utilities across the country indicate that UES distribution operations are among the best in the industry.

"Our current rates don't reflect the investments we've made and expenses incurred over three and a half years to improve upon the high level of service customers have come to expect from UES," said Paul Bonavia, chairman and CEO of UES. "We've reinforced and expanded our system infrastructure while investing in renewable energy and energy efficiency. Our proposed rates reflect the added value of these improvements, which have resulted in safer, cleaner and more reliable service for customers."

If approved, the rates would become effective in early 2014.

For more:
- read about the rate proposal

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