WOODBURY - The Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) announced today that its customers could be in for a rate increase next year due to higher property taxes.Under LIPA's proposed 2012 budget, the residential delivery charge for electricity could go up 1.5 percent, which is about $2.24 a month.The utility says the proposed rate hike comes as a result of a $52 million increase in its taxes next year. Also, LIPA will be adding $6 million to cover future storm cleanup costs. On the positive side, LIPA says fuel prices have been dropping, saving $48 million. The utility does note that the cost of Hurricane Irene cleanup will not be passed on to customers in this budget."The net charge to us and LIPA's customers was $44 million, and we have been able to absorb that without passing along an increase," says LIPA Chief Operating Officer Michael Hervey.The public will have a chance to review and comment on LIPA's 2012 budget at several meetings that will be held across the Island Nov. 30 and Dec. 6.