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Tonya Papanikolas ReportingEveryone's talking about the high price of gas, but power bills are up too. Utah Power says there are two reasons for that: people are simply using more power in the summer, and the company has a special three-tiered rate scale during these peak months.
Last month customers of Utah Power used a record amount of power in the middle of July. Now people are starting to get their bills back and some have been shocked. A spokesman for the company says users typically set a new record every summer. What people may not realize is if you're using your air conditioning more in the summer, you may also be paying a higher rate for it.
Utah Power has a 3-tiered scale from May to September:
- 1st Tier: Up to 400 kilowatt hours -- 6.9 cents/kwh
- 2nd Tier: 400-1000 killowatt hours -- 7.8 cents/kwh
- 3rd Tier: 1000+ kilowatt hours -- 9.2 cents/kwh
Utah Power says it's partly because peak generating plants are costly to run in the summer.
Dave Eskelsen, Utah Power Spokesman: "That's the most expensive energy we provide during the year. So it makes sense that higher usage customers would pay a corresponding higher rate, because the cost of providing that energy is greater."
Utah Power says they try to communicate the scale to customers every year but a lot of people are not aware of it.