JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri utility regulators have approved a $260 million rate increase for electric customers of Ameren Missouri.
The rate increase approved Wednesday could mean an extra $10 a month on an average residential bill when it takes effect in January.
It's intended to cover such things as the utility's rising fuel costs, infrastructure improvements, vegetation trimming and storm repairs.
About $90 million of the rate increase will go toward energy efficiency programs that could ultimately save money for residents and businesses.
Ameren Missouri serves 1.2 million customers.
The increase is about two-thirds of the $376 million hike that Ameren originally sought. But some consumer advocates say the amount approved Wednesday still is too much, given the economy.
This marks the fifth rate increase for Ameren in the past six years.
(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)