Electricity bills to show slight monthly increase next year

Rimbey residents will notice a small increase in their electricity bills next year.

Rimbey residents will notice a small increase in their electricity bills next year.

At its regular meeting Monday, council agreed to increase the FortisAlberta Inc. franchise fee from seven to 14 per cent for the 2015 calendar year.

CAO Lucien Cloutier said the increase will amount to about a $4 a month increase or $50 more per year.

“We intend to use the extra money for capital projects,’’ he said. “We are still well below the maximum that can be approved.”

The municipal franchise fee cap is 20 per cent. A municipality who wishes to exceed this franchise fee will need to advertise in the local paper for two weeks and acquire commission approval.

Mayor Rick Pankiw said the franchise fee has been at seven per cent since at least 2006 and council was in favour of an increase.

“The increase allows us to tap into another market for revenue,” he said.

The estimated revenue from the increase is $226,825 compared to $106,586 which was raised through the seven per cent franchise fee.

Franchise fees can be changed annually but written notice must be provided to FortisAlberta.