The biggest utility in Arizona is facing severe opposition from regulators against its request to raise rates for 1.1 million customers by $166 million annually to pay for, among other things, new pollution controls at one of its aging coal-burning power plants in New Mexico. Arizona Public Service asked for the rate hike, which would amount to an increase of about $11 per month for the average residential customer, but staff at the Arizona Corporation Commission and the Residential Utility Consumer Office, which regulate electric utility rates, both recommend no increase, meaning company shareholders would have to pay for the items APS wants to spend on. The utility said it needs the added revenue to help make $3.6 billion in upgrades and maintenance over the next three years, including spending $400 million to reduce pollution at the coal-fired Four Corners Power Plant near Farmington. Analysts estimate APS brought in about $3.6 billion in revenue and earned stockholders about $4 per share in 2016.


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