Oklahoma Residents React to Possible OG&E Rate Increase

ROLAND, Okla. (KFSM)- OG&E recently announced it's planning to ask for a rate increase after taking steps to reduce emissions.

OG&E spokesman Brian Alford said this is an effort to recoup its investment for complying with a federal mandate.

He said current rates are 31-percent below the national average, and even after this increase will remain among the lowest in the country.

"Since 2005 we have reduced carbon dioxide output by about 40-percent, sulfur dioxide by nearly 90-percent, and nitrogen oxide by about 75 percent so we've taken some very aggressive steps," said Alford.

The utility company is hoping to recoup some of that investment by raising rates for customers. This means an increase of about $7.60 per month for the average residential customers in Oklahoma.

Some residents are unhappy about the request though.

"I don't think that's good news, I don't think that'll be too good for people, probably make their bills a lot higher," said customer Triston Chapman. "No, I'm not looking forward to paying eight dollars more."

Alford said they understand the impact this will have and this decision is being taken very seriously.

"It's important to note that since 2014 our bills have gone down," said Alford. "With this increase bills will now return to approximately where they were in 2014."

While some customers are upset others said they stand-by OG&E.

"They haven't increased them since I've been a customer for eight years... You can't really complain that much about it," said Oklahoma resident Jeramie Standige. "I think whatever we can do to help the environment is good."

Alford said in the not too distant future the utility company plans to make a similar request for Arkansas. The request is currently being considered by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission.

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