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LG&E Requests Rate Increases

Louisvile Gas and Electric Company will ask  the state Public Service Commission to approve a rate increase for electricity and natural gas.LG&E says in a statement it plans to seek an increase of two percent for electrical service and a 5.9% hike for natural gas to pay for infrastructure improvements.   The utility and its sister company, Kentucky Utilities, are investing $3 billion in new facilities, including a new generating plant in Trimble County, Ky."In order to ensure we continue to meet the needs of our customers and thre increasing environmental demands, we are in the midst of unprecedented construction activity at LG&E and Kentucky Utilities," Vic Staffieri, CEO of E.ON U.S., the utilities' parent company, said in the statement.    KU is also seeking a rate increase for electricity.A typical LG&E customer would see a monthly increase of $5.20 for electricity and about $11 for natural gas with the new rates.LG&E says it will file the increases July 29 with the PSC, which is expected to hold public hearings.   If approved, the new rates would likely go into effect in early 2009.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.