Richardson council members greenlight 'modest' gas rate increase effective Oct. 1

Richardson residents will see a gas rate increase beginning Oct. 1 after approval of a settlement agreement with Atmos Energy at tonight's City Council meeting.

The settlement is the result of a rate review process overseen by the Atmos Cities Steering Committee, of which the city of Richardson is a founding member.

Each year Atmos Energy files a rate request with the steering committee. Its 2018 request proposed an increase of $42 million in base rates. Following negotiations between Atmos and the steering committee, a $24.9 million increase in base rates was agreed upon, said Brian Davis, chief information security officer for the city of Richardson.

Davis said this is a relatively small increase compared to those the city has seen in the past and that customers in Richardson should see only a "modest" increase on their monthly bills.

The fixed residential customer charge to have service connected and maintained will increase by 50 cents to $18.85. The residential consumption charge—or the amount that reflects how much energy a customer has used over a billing period—will also see a minimal rate increase to .14846 per Ccf [centum cubic feet], or the volumetric measure of natural gas.

Commercial properties will also see a slight rate increase from $41.95 to $43.50 for service connection and maintenance. Consumption rates will increase from .08746 per CcF to .09165 per CcF.

Davis said Atmos uses the revenue to pay for increased asset and infrastructure spending.

The resolution was approved unanimously. Council members Marta Gomez Frey and Mabel Simpson were absent.
By Olivia Lueckemeyer
Olivia Lueckemeyer graduated in 2013 from Loyola University New Orleans with a degree in journalism. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in October 2016 as reporter for the Southwest Austin edition before her promotion to editor in March 2017. In July 2018 she returned home to the Dallas area and became editor of the Richardson edition.