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North Iowa residents attended a public forum on May 2 to address concerns about Alliant Energy's requested 25% rate increase.

Thank you for the “Electric utility costs 101” article on the front page of the paper. It really points out what a terrible deal we are getting from Alliant Energy. Our utility rates are already among the highest in the state of Iowa. And Alliant wants to raise our bills.

There are 93 utility companies in the state of Iowa, many of them city owned. Only 6 of those companies (all small companies) have higher rates than Alliant Energy. Mid-American Energy, the other large company in Iowa, is NOT asking for a rate increase. Alliant is asking for permission to increase base rates by 25% for gas and electric customers.

Alliant reports that their average customer uses 756 kilowatts of electricity per month and pays $124. Mid-American Energy reports their average customer uses 851 kilowatts per month and pays $87.70. Nationally, average customers use 831 kilowatts and pay $102.55. Alliant customers use less energy and pay more for it. And Alliant Energy wants to increase your bills.

Alliant seems to be doing something wrong. We should not have to pay for their mismanagement.

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The discussion SHOULD be about how much Alliant Energy will lower our rates to get more in line with what is fair and to get them closer to what other companies charge. Instead, Alliant is requesting a permanent annual increase in their income of $225 million.

If you oppose the Alliant rate increase, contact the Iowa Utilities Board at customer@iub.iowa.gov The IUB is the group that will make the decision about granting the Alliant rate increase.

JoAnn Hardy, Mason City

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