Cedar Rapids, Iowa Alliant Energy-Interstate Power & Light President Eliot Protsch announced Friday that the company’s electric rate request with the Iowa Utilities Board this spring will be much lower than previously anticipated.
An average rate request of 9.6% to cover investments in the poles, wires, generating plants and operations that serve the company’s Iowa utility will be filed later this month.
While the request will average 9.6%, the impact on customer’s bills will vary depending on which customer class they are in. The average residential customer could expect to see less than an $8 increase on their monthly bill.
“We have assembled a request that will allow Alliant Energy to recover past investments and position us to invest an additional $1.1 billion in Iowa’s energy infrastructure,” said Protsch. “An average request of 9.6% also means that our customer’s energy bills will remain far below the rate of inflation since their last base rate increase, and extremely competitive within the region and nationally.
“California’s energy problems clearly demonstrated that a lack of investment in our energy system leads to economic havoc,” said Protsch. “Alliant Energy-IP&L has chosen a different course of action by investing nearly $825 million since 1997 to enhance the electric utility system that serves our Iowa customers.”
Protsch cited increased demand and subsequent investments in the energy system as the main driver of the rate case. “In order to meet the growing demand of our customers, we must continue making investments in our energy system,” he said.
“Economic growth, the increased digitalization of our society and the proliferation of computers, are driving the increased consumption,” said Protsch. “Despite the tremendous efforts of our customers and our company to conserve energy, demand for electricity continues to increase in step with economic growth. The most expensive approach we can take is to do nothing. Without reliable power there is no industry, no jobs, no lights and no computers.”
Base rates cover the poles, wires, switchgear, power plants, transformers, and other operational expenses that the company incurs to deliver reliable electricity.
“We’ve worked hard to hold the line on base rate increases for our Iowa customers. None of our customers have had a base rate increase in seven years, and some have not experienced a base rate increase in fifteen years,” added Protsch.