The state's largest electric utility is asking the Utah Public Service Commission for a $160 million rate increase, which would raise the typical residential customer's monthly power bill about 11 percent.

The request is the second by Rocky Mountain Power in the past 12 months.

The Committee of Consumer Services, the state's utility watchdog group, is criticizing this latest rate-hike request. Michelle Beck, the committee's executive director, said the tactics employed by Rocky Mountain Power in making back-to-back rate increase requests are "unfair and improper."

In December 2007, the utility asked for a $161 million rate increase, but scaled back that request to $75.45 million last month.

The commission is still reviewing the original request and has yet to make a decision.

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