- Associated Press - Thursday, November 3, 2016

HOBBS, N.M. (AP) - Xcel Energy is asking New Mexico regulators to raise rates for customers in the state next year, citing nearly $2 billion in new investments.

The Minnesota-based company filed the increase proposal this week with the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission to adjust its base rates in 2017, the Hobbs News-Sun reports (https://goo.gl/5ZiGbU).

If approved, a typical residential customer in New Mexico using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month would see a jump of around $18.23 more per month.

Xcel spokesman Wes Reeves said investments made since July 2015 and new facilities like power lines and substations that will be added by June 2018 cost $1.8 billion.

“In addition to the $1.8 billion in new power lines and substations, the increase reflects the shift of production costs as wholesale customers leave the system,” Reeves said. “Most wholesale contracts between Xcel Energy and area electric cooperatives and municipal systems end in 2019.”

David Hudson, president of Xcel Energy New Mexico, said in statement company officials expect increased demands for power as the economy expands.

“What customers get in return is an expanded and more resilient power grid that will serve the region’s needs for decades to come,” Hudson said.

Xcel Energy is seeking $41.1 million in additional non-fuel revenue annually or an 11 percent increase overall.

Xcel workers have created transmission lines into the heart of the Delaware Basin in southeastern New Mexico.

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Information from: Hobbs News-Sun, https://www.hobbsnews.com

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