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2015-2016 Biennial Rate Review

The 2015-2020 Strategic Plan Update calls for system average rate increases of 4.2% in 2015 and 4.9% in 2016. The Plan was adopted by City Council on June 30, 2014. Rate impacts for rate classes will vary depending on the rate review's cost of service analysis results.

2015 Rate Impacts


Consistent with the Strategic Plan Update, the system average rate increase for 2015 is 4.2%. This rate adjustment takes into account the increased revenue requirement as well as an expected reduction in customer consumption growth.

The table below shows average percentage increases by customer class. For a more precise estimate of your electric bill in 2015, try our Excel-based Customer Bill Calculator.

2015 Rate Increase Total Residential Small Medium Large High Demand
City of Seattle 4.5% 3.5% 4.6% 4.4% 5.6% 6.2%
Network 2.1%     2.7% 1.6%  
Shoreline 4.2% 3.9% 5.6% 4.2% 5.3%  
Tukwila 4.3% 5.2% 4.9% 4.1% 5.4% 3.4%
Other Suburbs 5.4% 5.6% 5.9% 3.7% 5.6%  


In 2015, higher energy consuming customer classes will generally see higher rate impacts than lower-consuming customer classes. This is due to increased energy costs. By comparison, distribution and customer service costs are flat and in some cases lower compared to 2014.

Network customer rates will remain significantly higher than non-network rates, but average rate increases are lower for network customers than other customer classes because of a decrease in distribution costs relative to 2014. (The network rate premium results from the cost of maintaining redundant distribution service.) In 2013, steeply rising distribution costs caused network rates to increase nearly three times the system average, so this 2015 change represents a return towards the historical norm.

Suburban, Shoreline and Tukwila rate impacts vary from City averages due to new terms for renewed franchise agreements and differences in customer consumption patterns.

2016 Rate Impacts


Consistent with the Strategic Plan, the system average rate increase for 2016 is 4.9%. The table below shows average percentage increases by customer class. For a more precise estimate your electric bill will in 2016, try the Excel-based Customer Bill Calculator.

2016 Rate Increase Total Residential Small Medium Large High Demand
City of Seattle 5.2% 5.0% 5.0% 5.1% 5.6% 6.1%
Network 3.6%     3.4% 3.9%  
Shoreline 4.8% 4.9% 5.0% 5.1% 5.6%  
Tukwila 5.5% 4.9% 5.0% 5.1% 5.6% 6.1%
Other Suburbs 4.9% 4.9% 5.0% 5.1% 5.6%  


Similar to 2015, energy costs are the primary driver for the 2016 rate increase, and higher energy consuming customer classes will see larger average rate impacts than lower consuming customer classes.

As with 2015, network impacts are lower than average because of flat distribution costs.

Additional resources include:
  1. Cost of Service Study 2015-2016 Summary
  2. Proposed 2015-2016 Rates and Sample Bills for City of Seattle Customers.
  3. Bill Calculator 2015-2016 Rates
  4. Cost of Service and Cost Allocation Report Proposed 2015-2016 Rates
  5. Rate Design Report Proposed 2015-2016 Rates
  6. Revenue Requirements Analysis Proposed 2015-2016 Rates
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