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RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Dominion Virginia Power customers can expect lower electric rates beginning July 1 when a new fuel charge takes action on a temporary basis.

For the average residential customer who uses 1,000 kilowatt-hours a month, the reduction will be $4.35, or about 3.8 percent.

With this change, the average residential bill will have increased by just under 4 percent since July 2008– less than half the rate of inflation over the same eight-year period.

In early 2016, Dominion applied with the Virginia State Corporation Commission, and on May 17 the Commission ruled that the new rate go into effect on July 1 on a temporary basis until a final order is reached later this year after the hearings.

The reduced rates are mainly a result of Dominion’s saving through lower fuel prices, milder weather and effective power station operations.

Company rates can not change without the approval of the SCC.

The fuel charge makes up nearly 20 percent of a typical residential bill. The company is not allowed to make any profit on the fuel charge, so customers only end up paying for the actual cost of power station fuels such as natural gas, coal, uranium, and oil. Typically, the fuel charge is only charged once a year.

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