Nipsco Seeks 17% Rate Hike For Its Natural Gas Customers

MERRILLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — The utility that provides natural gas for most of northern Indiana has asked state regulators to approve a 17% rate increase for its more than 800,000 gas customers.

Northern Indiana Public Service Co. asked the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission on Wednesday to approve a two-stage rate hike, the first phase of which would take effect on Sept. 1, 2022.

The Merrillville-based utility said the proposed increase would grant greater bill stability for its 821,000 gas customers by reducing bill fluctuations between high-usage and low-usage periods, especially during the winter heating months, The Journal Gazette reported.

NIPSCO’s proposed rate increase for base rates for gas must go through a regulatory review process, which includes an opportunity for public input.

The utility's natural gas base rates were most recently approved in 2018.

Based on the new proposal, a residential gas customer who uses 70 therms a month and currently pays $55 would see an overall increase of $9 a month — or about 17%, NIPSCO said in a news release.

The estimated change includes a proposed increase in the base monthly charge from $14 to $24.50.

NIPSCO has about 850,000 industrial, commercial and residential gas customers across 32 northern Indiana counties.