COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – Just three months after AEP Ohio announced a 28% rate hike for its customers – more could be on the way.

This week the company announced a new agreement that if approved, would once again raise monthly prices.

This week AEP sent a message to its customers about an electric security plan filed with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.

The company says it’s part of its continued effort to help customers reduce energy usage – and save money.

If approved, the agreement would include an annual increase of less than 1%, which is about $18 a year for the average customer.

“We worked very hard to limit rate impacts and balance affordability while ensuring that we have the resources to keep power flowing,” said Lisa Kelso, Vice President of Regulatory Finance at AEP Ohio.

This potential hike comes just three months after AEP announced a 28% rate hike in response to the summer heat.

“We understand that a rate increase is never welcome news. And while I can’t predict the future for those generation rates, what we saw in June was higher than we’ve historically seen, and we’re starting to see generation prices come down,” Kelso said. “Going forward, the rates will reset next June in 2024. So on a whole. We’re also making some improvements to the auction process through this ESP plan.”

The agreement also includes an improved tree maintenance program, a $1.5 billion investment in their grid infrastructure and an annual grant to economically disadvantaged and rural communities.

They’re also offering incentives to people who enroll in energy saving programs.

“Our focus really is on reliability and investing in our electric system to improve the resiliency of our grid,” Kelso said. “I think that there will be less volatility in generation rates that will benefit customers. And it really is about making sure that we’re able to continue investing in our distribution system through this ESP filing.”

The agreement still needs to be approved by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.

The rate hike would not start until June of next year.