ST. LOUIS (KMOV) – An Ameren Missouri electricity rate increase went into effect on Wednesday.
The average electric bill is now expected to go up about $10 a month.
Those who help the needy say bills will probably be even higher than that for some of the people who can afford it the least, as those residents generally live in older homes with poor insulation.
Groups like EnergyCare that help those in need pay utility bills say money has been tight for the past four years since the economy went south.
“Now we’re seeing a little bit of a gain, but even the people we look to, the bigger corporations that might have a trust or something like that, big foundations, they have less funds to give out so even though you see the need growing as you’re saying the funds are not even available for us,” said Dennis Kelley with EnergyCare.
Last month, Missouri utility regulators approved the $260 million rate increase. Ameren says it needs to cover rising fuel costs and infrastructure improvements.