The Empire District Electric Company announced Friday that it has filed a request with the Kansas Corporation Commission for changes in rates for its Kansas electric customers.

According to a release from Empire the company is seeking an overall annual increase in its Kansas operating revenue of approximately $1.5 million, or about 6.39 percent.  According to Empire, if approved, a Kansas residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity would experience a monthly increase of approximately $7.  

“We are seeking new Kansas rates to finish the recovery of costs associated with new generating units, Iatan 2 and Plum Point, plus the annual operating costs associated with these new units,” Brad Beecher, president and CEO, said in the release. “These additions allow Empire to continue to provide reliable service to our customers with a least-cost, balanced mix of resources.”

After the filing with the KCC, an audit of Empire’s operations will be conducted and hearings will be held. Empire anticipates that any new rates approved would not become effective for its Kansas customers until late 2011 or early 2012.

This rate hike would be on top of the 12 percent rate increase KCC granted Empire last year. Empire had originally been asking for a 25 percent increase last year.