A Maryland natural gas rate increase that would add $1.07 a month to the typical home heating bill was requested yesterday by Washington Gas Light Company.
The Maryland Public Service Commission was asked to approve the 2.6 per cent rate raise.
The rates would allow the gas company to collect an additional $3.7 million a year from its customers in the Maryland suburbs of Washington.
Washington Gas Light already has requested a similar rate increase in the District and said it will shortly seek higher rates in Virginia.
The gas company estimated the higher rates would raise the bill of a typical Maryland family that heats with gas from $41.51 a month to $42.58. The company has 186,000 home heating customers in Maryland. Another 13,000 customers who use gas but not for heating would see their typical bill go from $12.19 a month to $12.50.
The gas price increase was forecast last spring at Washington Gas Light's annual meeting, when company chairman Paul E. Reichardt termed the utility's profits inadequate.
The gas company got rate increases last fall in all three jurisdictions, helping boost its profits last year to $17.2 million, up from $10.8 million the previous year.