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Heritage Gas consumers face higher rates

Heritage Gas was given approval Thursday to increase its rates by 6.8 per cent across the board.

Heritage Gas was given approval Thursday to increase its rates by 6.8 per cent across the board.

The decision was made by the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board.

Heritage applied for a seven per cent rate increase in August to take effect Jan. 1.

The company said in its application the increase is to “address the shortfall between its revenue and its operating and administrative expenses.”

Heritage Gas previously won approval for another rate hike that will also take effect Jan. 1.

Heritage Gas president Jim Bracken said the two increases will mean about a 12 per cent hike for residential customers — from $75 to $80 a year.

“Even with those increases, our residential customers are still seeing 25 per cent or more in savings in the cost of using natural gas over furnace oil,” Bracken said. He said the utility has more than 2,900 customers hooked up.

Three intervenors spoke at the hearing on Nov. 15: a consumer advocate and representatives from the provincial Department of Energy and Nova Scotia Power Inc.

 
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