Cheyenne Light, Fuel & Power’s natural gas prices this winter are expected to remain flat or slightly below 2011 prices overall.  Last winter was warmer than normal across Cheyenne Light’s service territory. If weather is colder this winter than last, total heating bills could be higher than last winter if customers increase their usage. Besides price, usage is the other factor that determines overall natural gas utility bills, and weather is a key driver in how much natural gas customers use to heat their homes and businesses.Black Hills Energy Senior Gas Supply Manager Harry Ono says “natural gas prices were low this spring and summer so we took advantage of that by buying gas at a lower price and storing it for use this winter.” The company purchases a portion of its winter natural gas supplies in spring and summer through fixed-price and option contracts and stores some of that gas.  Remaining supplies are purchased at market rates on a monthly basis throughout the November to March heating season.

Alan Stoinski, Energy Services Specialist with Cheyenne Light, says there a few things customers can do to increase the efficiency of their homes and businesses to reduce energy waste. Stoinski says number one is check your furnace filter and change it if necessary.  He adds you should make sure your vents and ducts are clear. He says Customers can learn ways to save energy and lower their utility bills by visiting their website.

Cheyenne Light also offers programs and services to help customers better manage their utility bills and control energy usage including Budget Billing, which levels out monthly payments spreading winter bills over the entire year. Customers who struggle to pay their bill are encouraged to contact the company to arrange a payment plan or be referred to their local energy assistance agency.