Business News and Notes for Oct. 23

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A Mexican restaurant is hoping to score a touchdown with local football fans.

Casa Loya, 351 S. Ranney St., is adding TVs, beer taps and appetizers to its lineup in an effort to attract Sunday and Monday night football fans.

Sunday was the first Sunday the restaurant was open.

Sandra Loya, who owns the restaurant with her husband, Trinidad, said they have tried being open on Sundays before, and business was slow. But they are trying again with new features in hopes of attracting local fans.

She wasn't sure whether they would be open on Sundays permanently.

"It depends on how it goes," Sandra Loya said. "If it goes really well, we'll do it from now on."

She said community members have seemed excited for the additional day.

"People say, 'Yay! We've got another place to eat on Sundays, because there aren't that many.'"

Xcel: November bills lower than last year

Xcel Energy announced last week it expects November bills to be 35 percent lower than November 2005 bills.

However, as Xcel said is to be expected, bills for November will be higher than those for October.

Xcel's natural gas commodity price proposed to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission for residential and small-business customers would increase to $0.5746 per therm in November 2006 from $0.3960 per therm this month. The November 2005 price was $1.0130 per therm.

Typical residential customers are expected to increase consumption by 83 percent in November compared to October, so their overall bills would increase to $81.47 based on consumption of 99.7 therms. This compares to $39.39 this month on use of 54.5 therms, Xcel reported. The typical November 2005 bill was $125.52, or $44.05 higher than projected for next month, based on use of 99.7 therms.

Typical small-business customers are expected to use 100 percent more natural gas in November compared to October. Their overall bills would be $378.71 based on consumption of 489.8 therms, compared to bills this month of $155.90 on use of 245.2 therms, Xcel reported. The typical November 2005 bill was $586.97, or $208.26 higher than projected for next month, based on use of 489.8 therms.

The change proposed reflects anticipated natural gas prices, and impact on customer bills, only for November. If approved, the new prices would take effect Nov. 1.

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