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MLGW News Release
City Council approves MLGW budget: Water increase delayed until July
November 21, 2007
The Memphis City Council yesterday approved MLGW's $1.7 billion operating budget for 2008. By a vote of 7-5, the Council also approved rate adjustments that include a temporary one-year rate decrease in the electric division and modest increases to natural gas rates beginning in January and water rates in July. This is the first rate increase proposed by MLGW in four years.

For the first six months of 2008, the average monthly costs for a typical residential total utility bill (1200 kWh of electricity, 52 ccf of gas and 10 ccf of water) will increase only $1.55. After the water rate increase takes affect in July, the typical monthly customer charge will be $3.26 per month. In 2009, after the temporary electric rate decrease ends, customers will pay an average of $7.32 more per month. Customers can see how their usage compares to other MLGW customers with similar dwellings by visiting the My Account Dashboard at The free online Dashboard contains comprehensive tools to help them take control of their usage and costs.

Here is a breakdown of the rate changes:

  • A one-year -3.1 percent decrease in electric rates due to higher than expected revenues collected in previous years. The decrease results in a -$4.06 reduction for the typical monthly residential bill beginning with the January billing cycle.
  • Natural gas rates will increase 6.8 percent, or an average of $5.61 per month for the typical residential customer to begin with the January billing cycle.
  • Water rates will increase 15.0 percent, which equals about $1.71 on the typical residential customer bill. This increase will begin with the July billing cycle.
  • Combined, the monthly residential bill for the typical customer will increase $3.26.

    The electric rate decrease reflects the warmer than normal weather over the past few years which has increased the sales of electricity. The increases in the gas and water divisions are necessary for MLGW to continue to meet operating expenses and to maintain quality, reliable services.

    MLGW continues to have some of the lowest combined rates in the nation. A 2007 national survey of large metropolitan areas showed that MLGW is ranked sixth for the lowest combined residential utility bill. "Any rate action we take always considers the customer impact. We are working to balance our customers' desire for low-cost, reliable utility service with the increasing costs of running MLGW. We offered this rate structure with the assurance that it has the minimum impact on our customers," said Jerry Collins, Interim Chief Utility Officer at MLGW.

    MLGW is the largest three-service public power utility in the nation, serving more than 420,000 customers in Memphis and Shelby County. A 2007 national survey of large metropolitan areas showed that MLGW is ranked sixth for the lowest combined residential utility bill.