Natural gas rates are falling for customers who buy gas from Dominion East Ohio.
Starting Oct. 12, those customers will pay 5.64 per thousand cubic feet of gas, compared with the current rate of 9.90.
The average residential customer's bill will this month will be 52.19, which will be 45 percent lower than the average bill of 94.61 in October 2005.
The lower rate comes as the utility changes how it bills customers.
Under a two-year pilot program approved by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, Dominion now is charging what's called a Standard Service Offer. That rate was set in an auction among gas suppliers Aug. 29. It will vary each month.
The new charge replaces the gas cost recovery charge, which included forecasts of what Dominion expected to pay for gas.
The change was made to help people compare the cost of buying gas from Dominion with the cost of buying it from other suppliers. About two-thirds of Dominion's 1.2 million customers buy their gas from suppliers. Both types of customers still will pay a delivery rate of 2.25 per thousand cubic feet.