Mar 24, 2010 5:45 AM by Jeannette Hynes

Gas rate going down, water rates likely going up

Destiny Kesterson says she's still paying for her winter utilities bills.  Her highest bill was $380.

"The only thing we can pay is by half and half or quarter until I get a late due notice and they say they're going to disconnect it. Otherwise, it's never full paid off," says Kesterson.

Colorado Springs Utilities customers bought more natural gas this winter than Colorado Springs Utilities was expecting, so the utilities company is giving the money back to its customers with a three-percent natural gas rate decrease. 

"That will be very helpful," says Kesterson.

Colorado Springs Utilities is looking to start the decrease April 1, saving average customers a couple of dollars a month. 

Also, water rates could increase starting in 2011 to pay for the Southern Delivery System.  That's the pipeline that will run from the Pueblo Reservoir to bring water to Colorado Springs.  The proposed increase is 12 percent and about 80 percent of that increase will go directly to the $1 billion project.

"It ensures future water supply for the community, well into the next generation," says Bill Cherrier, Colorado Springs Utilities' chief planning and finance officer.

A public meeting on the water rate increase is set for April 27.


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