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    Cardinal Natural Gas files for rate increase


    August 4, 2022 - Greg Jordan, Bluefield Daily Telegraph, W.Va.

     

      Aug. 4—BLUEFIELD — A natural gas utility serving Bluefield has applied to the Public Service Commission of West Virginia for a rate hike which would add more than $27 to monthly residential bills.

      Cardinal Natural Gas Company, which serves about 3,400 customers in Bluefield, Mercer County, has applied with the state Public Service Commission to increase rates. These new rates, which would increase residential monthly bills by $27.39, would go into effect Nov. 1.

      The rate increase will increase the company's annual revenue by about $1,873,420, an increase of about 29.68 percent, according to the legal notice published Wednesday in the Bluefield Daily Telegraph.

      In July, Mountaineer Gas Company, which serves Mercer, McDowell and Monroe Counties, also applied July 28 for a rate increase. West Virginia's natural gas utilities file each year for increases by Aug. 1 as the cost for obtaining natural gas goes up, according to Susan Small, a spokesperson for the PSC.

      The Mountaineer Gas Company rate hike will impact about 220,000 customers in the counties it serves. Mercer, McDowell, Monroe, Summers and Wyoming Counties are served by Mountaineer Gas.

      If the state PSC approves the Mountaineer Gas increase, the average monthly bill for natural gas would increase by $25.08, an increase of 34.7 percent, according to the legal notice published Tuesday in the Bluefield Daily Telegraph. The proposed increased rates would become effective on Nov. 1 unless otherwise ordered by the Public Service Commission.

      he proposed rate increases would raise the company's revenue by about $90,914,544 annually, an increase of approximately 73.8 percent, according to the legal notice.

      The cost of obtaining natural gas, called the Purchased Gas Adjustment (PGA), compensates utilities for what they pay for gas and does not include any profit for the companies. Natural gas prices are set by the national market and not by the PSC, Small said.

      No public hearings for the Cardinal Natural Gas Company or the Mountaineer Gas Company rate increases had been scheduled as of Wednesday, but they could be announced at a later date.

      Requests for the PSC to intervene can be mailed to Executive Secretary, Public Service Commission of West Virginia, P.O. Box 812, Charleston WV 25323. Protests can be filed online through the commission's website using the "Submit a Comment" link or may be mailed to the Executive Secretary, Public Service Commission of West Virginia, P.O. Box 812, Charleston WV 25323.

      Natural gas utilities are now paying three times more for gas than they were the first of the year, according to Charlotte Lane, chairman of the Public Service Commission. The companies are seeing a 300 percent increase in the price for natural gas.

      — Contact Greg Jordan at gjordan@bdtonline.com

      Contact Greg Jordan at gjordan@bdtonline.com

      ___

      (c)2022 the Bluefield Daily Telegraph (Bluefield, W.Va.)

      Visit the Bluefield Daily Telegraph (Bluefield, W.Va.) at bdtonline.com

      Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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