Missouri utility regulators are examining ways to help low-income consumers cope with higher electric rates.
The Public Service Commission will look into creating a new rate class for low-income consumers. Regulators also plan to examine how other states help the poor.
The commission has approved opening a formal docket on the issue. That allows briefs to be filed by industrial energy users, utilities, advocacy groups and the state official who represents utility customers.
Public Service Commissioner Robert Kenney says regulators have been hearing about the effect of rising rates on the poor. He says the review allows officials to explore ways to help ease the burden.