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SDG&E hopes to increase rates

San Diego Gas & Electric is asking state regulators for permission to raise rates by $29 million next year to help pay the utility’s higher insurance costs, it was reported Wednesday.

The utility is also seeking to pass on the costs of claims filed by uninsured wildfire victims, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

Insurance costs for SDG&E have soared since the utility agreed to pay $740 million to settle claims from the 2007 wildfires. Hundreds of millions of dollars in additional claims stemming from the Witch Creek, Guejito and Rice fires are pending.

Last year, SDG&E paid $13.6 million for $1.2 billion in general liability insurance, according to the Union-Tribune. When the utility renewed this year, it paid $55.2 million for $399 million in wildfire coverage and an additional $800 million in general coverage, the newspaper reported.

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