By Robert Haugh
Silicon Valley Power (SVP) will increase its rates by 8 percent to cover the increased cost of generating and delivering power to Santa Clara.
According to SVP staff, costs have gone up for the utility driven by higher inflation, natural gas prices and electric supply and distribution costs.
The rate increase will be approximately $5.7 million a month starting January 2023.
The 8 percent rate increase is higher than the 3 percent rate increase of the past three years.
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, SVP kept rate increases to the minimum over the last two years.
For an average Santa Clara residential electric customer, the increase will be approximately $4.44 per month (from $55.61 to $60.05) or approximately $53.28 a year.
For customers who have difficulty absorbing these increases, SVP continues to offer assistance to low-income customers and energy conservation programs and rebates to help customers reduce their electricity usage.
According to SVP staff, Santa Clara will continue to have the lowest average system rates in California for utilities with more than 10,000 customers.
The City Council voted unanimously to accept the proposed rate increase.