NATIONAL FUEL GAS COMPANY

NATIONAL FUEL GAS COMPANY

March 24, 2005 14:38 ET

National Fuel Receives Service Cost Increase for Pennsylvania


NEWS RELEASE TRANSMITTED BY CCNMatthews

FOR: NATIONAL FUEL GAS COMPANY

NYSE SYMBOL: NFG

MARCH 24, 2005 - 14:38 ET

National Fuel Receives Service Cost Increase for
Pennsylvania

ERIE, Pa.--(CCNMatthews - Mar 24, 2005) -

On March 23, 2005, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC)
voted to approve a settlement allowing National Fuel Gas Distribution
Corporation to raise base rates by $12 million, or 3.45 percent overall,
effective April 15, 2005. The Company had requested a $22 million
increase on September 15, 2004. The PUC's Office of Trial Staff, the
state's Office of Consumer Advocate and the Office of Small Business
Advocate supported the settlement.

The increase will raise the annual bill for a typical residential
customer using 105,000 cubic feet of gas to $1,387.62 from $1,332.74.
"This change in rates covers the Company's costs to serve customers;
service costs account for less than 30 percent of a residential
customer's annual bill. Most of a customer's bill can be attributed to
gas costs, which have recently been near all-time highs in the energy
marketplace," said Nancy Taylor, Senior Manager of Corporate
Communications. "The Company makes no profit on gas costs; they are
passed on to customers on a dollar-for-dollar basis."

The settlement also permits National Fuel to expand its Low Income
Residential Assistance Program beyond 8,500 participants. The Company
currently services over 8,900 low-income customers as a part of this
discounted rate program.

As part of the settlement, the Company has credited $24,387 to customers
for payments they made to CashPoint Network Services, Inc., that were
not forwarded by the bill processor to National Fuel.

The Company also agreed not to file a request for another base rate
increase before May 31, 2006.

National Fuel services approximately 216,000 customers in 14 counties of
northwestern Pennsylvania.

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Contact Information

  • FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
    For National Fuel Gas Company:
    Analyst Contact:
    Margaret M. Suto, 716-857-6987
    or
    Media Contact:
    Nancy Taylor, 814-871-8699