MLGW customers can expect utility bills to increase - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

MLGW customers can expect utility bills to increase

MLGW President Jerry Collins confirms the utility company will pass on the rate hike to customers. MLGW President Jerry Collins confirms the utility company will pass on the rate hike to customers.

(WMC-TV) - All across the Mid-South, MLGW customers can expect their utility bill to go up.

Kate Jones is not happy the Tennessee Valley Authority is increasing its electricity rate.

"My family and I take great pains to keep our utilities down, to keep our carbon footprint down," she said.

MLGW President Jerry Collins confirms the utility company will pass on the rate hike to customers.

"Their increase is 1.5 percent, which is pretty much in line with the consumer price index," he said.

VA spokesman Chris Stanley says the rate hike is lower than the inflation rate.

"The TVA is seeing flat or slightly declining sales for the past couple of years, and so we're needing to make a slight rate increase in order to recoup the money we need just to operate," said Stanley.

The TVA made internal changes to lessen the blow.

"We're changing our organizational structure, we're cutting our budget internally," said Stanley.

The average MLGW customer will pay $18 more per year. Jones says every penny counts in a city with a 27 percent poverty rate.

"My concern is that more and more people are going to end up on the street because they can't pay their bills," said Jones.

Collins said if someone cannot afford utilities in Memphis, then that person could not afford utilities anywhere else in the country.

"We're happy that we can offer our customers the lowest rates anywhere," said Collins.

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.

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