The City of Claremore is warning residents they may start seeing much higher electric bills in the coming months.
The city manager said this is a trend across Oklahoma, but they want folks in Claremore to be prepared.
If you were shocked when you opened your electric bill this month, you aren’t alone.
Claremore City Manager John Feary said bills are higher due to the rising cost of natural gas across the world.
“Right now with natural gas prices and the fuel cost adjustment that changes for everyone, that’s what’s causing significant issues right now,” Feary said.
This bill increase applies to all Oklahomans, but in Claremore, the city buys its power supply from the Grand River Dam Authority.
Feary said there are charging 10.6 cents per kilowatt hour, which is close to what other companies are charging in many cities across the Sooner State.
“Other cities are charging 10.6, 11.1, 10.8, 12.2, the list goes on,” Feary said. “It’s all across the board across the state.”
Feary said power is generated mostly by natural gas. He said the cost of natural gas has increased over the past 18 months from $2 dollars per unit to $9 dollars due to the war in Ukraine, higher usage, and overall demand.
He said the cost is 291 percent higher than last year and because of that, your bill is higher.
Claremore Resident Mike Brasher says his electric bill is getting worse each month.
“It keeps getting higher, we paid $300 last month, $400 this month and looking forward, maybe $500 next month,” Brasher said.
Feary said no matter where you turn, the increases are the same.
“That’s in the market, whether you’re at GRDA, PSO, OG&E, whoever you are, that’s what they’re buying gas for on the market to generate the power,” Feary said.
Feary said Claremore can’t lower its costs because some of the revenue from electric bills is used to run the city’s municipalities, but he said they feel the increases too.
“We are working through it with you, the provider is frustrated with the cost, we are frustrated, and we know you’re frustrated with the cost,” Feary said.
He said the data shows the natural gas prices are expected to lower sometime next year, but not by much.