NorthWestern Files for Rate Reduction

By Beacon Staff

HELENA – NorthWestern Energy plans to reduce its electric and natural gas transmission and distribution rates starting in January, due to a reduction in property taxes.

The company expects to reduce residential electrical transmission and distribution rates by 3 percent, with a 1.8 percent reduction for natural gas distribution.

The net effect on the average bill will be 97 cents a month for electricity and 76 cents per month for natural gas.

The company received about $4.6 million from state taxes held in escrow while NorthWestern protested its property taxes from 2005 through 2007. The company says it also has a lower property tax bill in 2008.