Bonneville proposes rate increases

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Bonneville Power Administration wants to raise wholesale power rates 9.6 percent to make up for lower surplus power sales due to competition from power plants running on low-cost natural gas.

The federal agency said Thursday it needs the money for maintenance and upgrades for the dams and nuclear power plant that produce its power.

BPA also wants a 13 percent increase in fees it charges utilities to move power on 15,000 miles of transmission lines.

Spokesman Mike Hansen said the amount that consumers see on their electric bills will be less, because not all that increase gets passed through by utilities.

The agency adjusts its rates every two years. Following a review by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, new rates will go into effect Oct. 1 2013.

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