SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — The Illinois Citizens Utility Board is calling Nicor’s $321 million rate hike request “unjust and unreasonable.”

In January, the gas utility asked for the increase, but CUB says the amount should be slashed by $106 million, based on expert testimony by independent analysts.

In a statement, Nicor said the increase would be necessary to run their business because of inflation and global impacts, such as the war in Ukraine.

Nicor said their request for a hike would add just over $9 a month to the average customer’s monthly gas bills.

Nicor offers energy assistance programs to help low-income residents.

Illinois has announced an additional $300 million in funding to help Illinois residents pay their energy bills.

The money comes from the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), and is available for families who meet criteria to receive natural gas, propane, or electricity bill assistance.

A chart with eligible income thresholds can be found on this webpage.