MADISON, Wis. --
We Energies is asking state regulators for permission to raise electric rates, two months after they allowed a $73 million rate hike. The Milwaukee-based utility says sharp increases in the price of natural gas used at its power plants and other fuel costs are reasons it's asking to raise electric rates by another $79 million.
The increase would add $2.24 per month to a residential bill of $86. On average, rates for large industrial customers would rise 3.6 percent.
The price of natural gas has surged by 30 percent since December.
We Energies is the state's largest utility, serving 1.1 million electric customers.