08/29/2012 12:53 EDT | Updated 10/29/2012 05:12 EDT

Manitobans to pay more for electricity, 2.5 per cent rate hike approved

WINNIPEG - Manitobans will be paying more for electricity effective Sept. 1.

The Manitoba Public Utilities Board has approved Manitoba Hydro’s application for a 2.5 per cent interim rate increase.

The Crown-owned utility is also seeking a further 3.5 per cent increase in electricity rates effective next April 1.

Public hearings on that rate increase are to begin Dec. 10 in Winnipeg.

The Progressive Conservative opposition has been calling for a power rate freeze.

The party says there should be an independent review of the NDP government's plan to expand Manitoba Hydro.