National Grid proposes rate hike to pay for infrastructure upgrades

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – National Grid bills could increase in Spring 2018 to make improvements to infrastructure around the Capital Region.

“I feel like I already pay a lot of money, and an increase would really be awful,” Mary Mohajeri said.

National Grid announced on Monday the company submitted a request to increase delivery charges for electricity by 17.5 percent and gas by 20.5 percent.

“Twenty percent seems really high for a rate increase,” Susan Soldini said.

The rate hikes are a result of economic fluctuations and plans to improve infrastructure.

“Interest rates change,” Patrick Stella with National Grid said. “The rate increase proposal itself is really about infrastructure investment and updating the infrastructure that we have.”

Stella said the new upgrades will have noticeable benefits.

“The infrastructure that we wanna upgrade will take manpower, so we’re looking at about 280 additional jobs in Upstate New York,” he said.

If the plan is approved, bills will increase in March 2018.

“There will be negotiations back-and-forth, so it’s not a done deal, by any means,” Stella said.

National Grid said it is working on a program for low income individuals to manage the potential higher costs.

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