Provincial government calls off SaskEnergy rate hikes
Natural gas rates are not going to increase in Saskatchewan this year.
The provincial government says it has directed the Saskatchewan Rate Review Panel to cancel rate increase applications from SaskEnergy. A combined proposal from the utility had asked for five per cent increases in the delivery rate in July of this year and next year.
Don Morgan, the minister responsible for SaskEnergy, said he made the decision to help keep energy costs affordable for residents.
"We think it's appropriate just to maintain some stability right now," he told reporters in Regina on Thursday. "So we will, we asked them, to withdraw the application."
Last August, SaskEnergy hiked its delivery rate by eight per cent, and its commodity rate by 31 per cent.
Erika Ritchie, the NDP critic for SaskEnergy, noted her party has been calling for the government to scrap the planned rate hikes.
"We are seeing windfall revenues this year, and the government needs to be ensuring that it's using those revenues to make life more affordable for Saskatchewan people," she said.
She also called on the government to roll back SaskPower rate increases, noting there have been three hikes in electricity rates during the past eight months.
Morgan said SaskEnergy had an application pending before the rate review panel, while SaskPower does not at this time.
In December, the rate review panel recommended maintaining the delivery and commodity increases put in place in August, but suggested the proposed increases for 2023 and 2024 not be considered.