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NC AG Cooper appealing Duke Energy rate increase

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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper is appealing the decision that approved a 7 percent rate increase for Duke Energy.

Cooper filed the appeal on Wednesday. He said the decision by the N.C. Utilities Commission during what he called tough economic times is wrong for the state's consumers and businesses.

Rates for residential customers will increase by about $7 per month based on 1,000-kilowatt hours.

A statement from Cooper's office said the appeal focuses on whether it should be allowed to raise customers' rates in order to make a 10.5 percent shareholder profit. The statement also said the commission's decision to grant the increase in January wasn't supported by the evidence.

A Duke Energy spokeswoman said the utility was disappointed with the appeal and expects the order will be upheld.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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