Hearings In Salina, Topeka On Westar Rate Hike Request

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SALINA, Kan. (AP) - A public hearing is scheduled for this week in Salina on Westar Energy's proposed increase in electric rates.

The Salina Journal reports the hearing is set for Thursday evening, 6 p.m., at the Salina College Center at Kansas State University-Salina. A meeting is planned for the same time in Topeka at the Kansas Corporation Commission, 1500 SW Arrowhead Road.

Westar has applied to the Kansas Corporation Commission for a 1.7 percent increase worth $31.7 million. The utility company says it needs the increase to meet federal requirements. Westar also wants to readjust rates so residential and small-business customers pay more while industrial consumers pay less.

Under the proposal, residential bills will increase nearly 9 percent, or about $7.50 a month for 900 kilowatt hours of usage. Bills for large industrial companies would drop about 8 percent.

Utility bills for public schools would also drop more than 7 percent.
Information from: The Salina (Kan.) Journal, http://www.salina.com