AARP North Dakota Opposes Latest MDU Gas Rate Increase Proposal

Posted on 05/07/24

BISMARCK, N.D. – AARP strongly opposes Montana Dakota Utilities (MDU) proposal to increase residential natural gas rates by $35.3 million in 2024. The rate increase request made to the North Dakota Public Service Commission would mean that residential customers will see a 9.84 percent increase in their monthly bill.

Even small increases can be detrimental to low users and people on fixed incomes – which includes many of our AARP members.
Josh Askvig, AARP ND State Director

Utility rate increases are an escalating concern for North Dakotans, many of whom struggle to pay their utility bills, along with other critical household expenses. AARP North Dakota opposes this proposed rate increase on behalf of its 83,000 members and North Dakota residents, aged 50-plus.

“At a time when so many older North Dakotans are already struggling with the rising costs of groceries, medicine and healthcare, most can’t afford a utility rate increase, too. It’s especially concerning to see how this filing puts an additional cost burden on MDU customers,” says Josh Askvig, AARP ND State Director. “We’re fighting to keep utility costs affordable.

In its rate increase filing for natural gas customers in North Dakota, MDU proposes to increase residential rates 9.84% while the overall average increase is just 7.45%. In addition, MDU is proposing another increase to the basic service charge – the fixed charge residential customers pay before turning on the gas – despite already having one of the highest fixed charges in the area. MDU also proposes the addition of a residential distribution delivery charge.

“Even small increases can be detrimental to low users and people on fixed incomes – which includes many of our AARP members. AARP has a long history of opposing such increases in North Dakota and will continue to ensure rates remain affordable. We urge the North Dakota Public Service Commission to reject the increase", said Askvig.

When MDU requested a 17% residential electric rate hike in 2022, AARP ND fought the filing and brought the rate hike down significantly – saving consumers money and ensuring their voices were heard.

This story is provided by AARP North Dakota. Visit the AARP North Dakota page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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