On Thursday, Nov. 16, 2023, the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) entered an order that approved an increase in rates by approximately $5.33 per month for the typical residential bill. The ICC approved a rate design that establishes a lower monthly customer charge and a higher distribution rate for usage. The higher distribution rate will affect bills, as this charge is based on a customer's monthly natural gas usage.
Even with this rate increase, which will help us meet evolving regulations, continue to modernize our system and recover inflationary costs, Nicor Gas’ distribution rates will remain among the lowest of any major gas distribution utility in Illinois.
We continue to work with our regulators and other stakeholders to support Nicor Gas’ responsibility and commitment to deliver clean, safe, reliable and affordable natural gas to the 2.3 million customers we are so privileged to serve. Our focus remains on ensuring that customers most in need receive support from basic needs and bill payment assistance to helping make homes more energy efficient.
Our Energy Efficiency Program provides more than $12.5 million annually to assist customers with energy saving home improvements. Just last year Nicor Gas applied $61.4 million in energy assistance grants to income-eligible customers through initiatives like the Sharing and Energy Aide programs. In addition to our existing options, the ICC approved a Low-Income Assistance Discount that will allow for a tiered discount rate for residential customers who fall between 0-300% of the Federal Poverty Level, available beginning 2024-25 winter heating season.
Every day, around the clock Nicor Gas delivers natural gas, dependably – and our customers deserve it. It’s what we’ve done safely for more than 160 years, and we’re here to do it for many more.