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Hydro seeks annual rate hike of 7.9% until 2024 – Winnipeg Free Press

Manitoba Hydro is taking a “pay me now or pay me later” approach with its provincial regulator as it seeks to meet its financial targets.

In a letter to the Public Utilities Board last week, Hydro said it will now require annual consumer electrical rate increases of 7.9 per cent until 2023-2024 — two more years than it previously projected. For 2024-2025, the Crown corporation figures it will need a rate hike of 4.54 per cent.

Manitoba Hydro said it had to revise its revenue requirements after the PUB denied its request for a 7.9 per cent rate increase in July. The regulator instead granted an interim increase of 3.36 per cent, which took effect Aug. 1.

Kelvin Shepherd, Hydro’s president and CEO, said Tuesday the corporation needs to improve its cash flow. It also wants to improve its debt-equity ratio to 25 per cent within the next decade, placing it on a solid financial footing and preventing the need for potentially higher rate increases in the future.

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