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Final NC Public Hearing On Duke Energy Rate Hike

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(Photo by Davis Turner/Getty Images)

(Photo by Davis Turner/Getty Images)

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HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. (AP) — The public gets its last chance to sound off on a deal that will allow a Duke Energy subsidiary to raise power rates by more than $200 million a year in a territory ranging from Durham west to the Tennessee border.

The North Carolina Utilities Commission hears from the public in Hillsborough on Tuesday about the requested rate increase for customers of Duke Energy Carolinas. Groups representing the poor and seniors are protesting.

The power company has a deal with a state regulatory division responsible for representing consumers that would allow a rate increase that includes a 10 percent return on equity, a measure of profit.

Duke Energy Carolinas originally requested a $446 million annual rate increase in February, but is now willing to take less than half that amount.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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