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Duke asks for 12.6 percent rate increase for NC

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) ó Utility company Duke Energy plans to
ask North Carolina regulators to increase customer rates by an average
of 12.6 percent beginning Jan. 1.

If approved by regulators, the
increase would boost rates for the average residential customer by $11
a month, according to the company. Rates for industrial customers would
go up 15 percent and rates for other customers would increase by nearly
10 percent.

The increase would generate nearly $500 million a year for Duke.

Charlotte,
N.C.-based Duke Energy Corp. adjusts its fuel costs that customers pay
annually, but the last general rate increase in North Carolina was 1991.

Even with the requested increase, Duke said rates in the Carolinas will remain well below national averages.

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