Ameren CIPS Wants to Raise Rates Again

Ameren CIPS Wants to Raise Rates Again
By: Arnold Wyrick
Just one month after handing out rebate checks and issuing credits to their customers, AMEREN Central Illinois Public Service Company officials want to raise their rates again. 
In October, the power company's customers got a little relief from their skyrocketing power bills.  The rates had been frozen for the past 10 years.  But, in January the Illinois legislature failed to uphold the rate freeze, and people's electric bills soared.
Now the company is asking the Illinois Commerce Commission to raise their rates again for both gas and electric by 11.5 percent.
"I think we're having a hard enough time paying the electric rates as they are now without having them jacked up any higher.  Short of building a bonfire in your living room floor, I don't know what the answer is," said Barbara O'Hare of Carbondale.
"I don't think it's too good of a deal.  Because it's high enough now, and people living on low incomes can't pay their bills," said Glen Edwards of Ava.
The Illinois Commerce Commission has up to 11 months to decide whether or not they'll approve AMEREN's rate hike request.  If they do rule in favor of the company, the rate hike would take affect immediately.