State regulators began deliberations Monday over whether New Mexico’s largest electric utility can raise its rates by 9.2 percent over the next two years.
The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission started with a round of public comments before settling in for what is expected to be two weeks of testimony from expert witnesses and attorneys on both sides of the proposal. Commissioners will make a final decision later this year.
The Public Service Co. of New Mexico is seeking $62.3 million from customers to compensate for capital investment costs. Most of the expenses are related to the partial shuttering of the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station in northwestern New Mexico and pollution controls and maintenance at another coal-fired power plant in the region.
Other costs include infrastructure investment and revenue losses from more energy-efficient appliances and consumer behaviors.
The PNM plan calls for the increase in rates to be phased in through 2018 and 2019.
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