Customers of Alabama's largest natural gas distributor are going to see a reduction in their rates starting in the fall.
The Alabama Public Service Commission voted unanimously Tuesday for Alabama Gas to refund $16.5 million to its customers through lower rates between Oct. 1 and March 31. PSC members timed the lower rates to coincide with winter heating bills.
The reduction is due to Alabama Gas having a return on common equity that exceeds the amount allowed by the PSC's rate plan for the Birmingham-based company. When that happens, the gas company has to lower rates to get its return back into the allowed range.
The PSC hasn't computed how much the reduction will mean for the average household. Alabama Gas serves 423,000 customers in the state.