NB Power applies for rate hike

NB Power customers may soon be paying an average of two per cent more for their electricity.

The utility said Thursday that it had filed a rate application with the Energy and Utilities Board.

The average rate increase application is for two per cent, which NB Power said would amount to an extra $4 a month for the average household.

"We recognize that any rate increase can be a challenge for our customers," said Darren Murphy, chief financial officer and senior vice-president of corporate services, in a statement.

"Modest increases now will ensure we are in a position to invest in a sustainable future to protect our customers over the long term."

The utility is also proposing to develop an Advanced Metering Infrastructure — or AMI — to help improve the efficiency, reliability and security of the power grid.

Murphy said the technology would give customers a better picture of their energy usage and allow the utility to quickly pinpoint outages without customers having to notify them.

Officials said AMI has 10 million meters in use in Canada and 50 million in the United States.

A hearing on the rate application is expected to be held next February.