Several marketers now have offerings such as a prepay service as an alternative to the regulated provider structure. Additionally, our analysis also shows that customers have been slower to connect their gas service this winter, due to the unseasonably mild temperatures.

Our Electric and Gas sales statistics can be found in the press release we filed earlier today and are available on our website.

On our weather normalize basis, electric residential sales are up approximately 1%. Industrial sales also saw improvement with an increase of a little more than 1%. Commercial sales continued to lag behind last year with a decrease of approximately 2% when weather normalized.

As we’ve mentioned previously, industrial growth typically leads, followed by residential, and then commercial. So it appears that some of the industrial activity in our area over the last couple of years has translated into residential consumption, but we’ve yet to see that in the commercial sector. These results were anticipated in our 2011 plan, and we’ve forecast similar patterns in 2012.

While we continue to see customer growth, we expect that customer usage will be slightly lower in 2012 as a result of demand side management programs, new lightbulb standards that are being phased in, more energy efficient air conditioners, and general conservation.

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