The rate hike was given the green light on Tuesday. The company says rates will go up a total of $205 million, or 4.5 percent for the first two years, increasing by 0.6 percent thereafter. The total increase in rates after September of 2015 will be $235 million, or an average increase of 5.1 percent for all of Duke's customers in North Carolina.
After September 2015, the bill for an average residential customer, using 1000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month, will increase to $110.32, from the current $102.72, or $7.60 per month. This includes an increase in the basic customer charge to $12.19 per month, from the current $9.90.
The increase was initially agreed upon in a settlement between Duke Energy Carolinas and the North Carolina Public Staff, which represents consumers.
In a statement released Tuesday, Duke Energy's President for North Carolina Paul Newton said, "We're pleased the North Carolina Utilities Commission has approved our revenue request. The decision reflects a balance between the needs of our company and those of our customers."
The Associated Press says North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper could appeal the rate increase.