COLLINSVILLE — Ameren Illinois is proposing a $7.22 million decrease in rates next year in a proposal filed Thursday with the Illinois Commerce Commission.

The proposal would reduce the bill for a typical residential customer by $1.13 per month, the company said in a news release.

It also said it's the sixth time it has sought a decrease in rates since the Energy Infrastructure Modernization Act was passed in 2011. Since then, the company has installed storm-resistant utility poles and power lines, as well as improving technology to detect service disruptions and re-route power to alternative sources. Between those and the smart meters many customers have had installed by the company, there has been a 20 percent increase in reliability, the company said.

Overall electric bills are expected to be at a lower monthly rate next year than in 2012 for Ameren customers if the proposal is approved, the company said, and would be below the 2018 national average.