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Judge wants lower Xcel rate hike

Judge wants lower Xcel rate hike Click to Enlarge Photo:

Jul 9, 2013 at 4:38 am

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. (AP) An administrative law judge says Xcel Energy's proposed electricity rate hike should be held to 4.7 percent.

In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Xcel said Monday that last week's recommendations by Administrative Law

Judge Jeanne Cochran would amount to a $127 million rate increase.

Xcel is asking the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission for a 7.8 percent, increase, totaling $209 million, to pay for power plant upgrades.

The state Department of Commerce has recommended a 3.7 percent increase, saying the utility should cut bonuses and other perks for executives.

Xcel's 1.2 million electric customers in Minnesota have been paying an interim increase of about 9 percent since Jan. 1, but likely will get refunds plus interest after the PUC issues a final ruling, which is expected in September.

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