MADISON, Wis., Sept. 13, 2002 — Alliant Energy recently received the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin’s (PSCW) final order on Wisconsin Power and Light Company’s (WP&L) 2002 retail rate case.
The order provides an $82 million increase in retail rates, or roughly 79 percent of the amount requested. The new authorized rates are expected to be effective on or about September 13.
In its decision, the PSCW increased the authorized return on common equity for WP&L from 11.7 percent set in 1997 to 12.3 percent. Of the $82 million increase, $49 million was already in place due to an April 2002 PSCW decision to provide interim rate relief.
“We respect the process and the PSCW, even if there were certain decisions we did not agree with,” says Bill Harvey, President of WP&L. “Overall we believe the PSCW’s decision in this case will enable us to maintain the financial strength of our Wisconsin utility.”
Alliant Energy’s utility subsidiaries have $252 million in pending rate actions before various regulatory agencies. The resolution of the Wisconsin retail case represents roughly a third of the total and is a significant milestone in helping the company meet its strategic objectives.
“Most important, this rate relief will help ensure that we continue to provide safe, reliable and environmentally sound utility service to our customers here in Wisconsin,” says Harvey. “While the amount of relief was less than we requested, it is consistent with the projections we used in calculating our most recent 2002 and 2003 earnings guidance.”
The increase in base rates above interim levels is $33 million, or about 4.7 percent. Included in this total is an increase in electric rates of approximately $25.9 million (4.2%), $6.3 million (8.9%) for natural gas, $706,000 (19.3%) for water customers in Beloit and $76,000 (7.9%) for water customers in Ripon.
A typical WP&L residential customer will see an increase of approximately $3.17 per month in their electric bill and an increase of $2.46 per month in their natural gas bill.
The average monthly bill for residential water customers in Ripon will increase approximately $0.77. Recognizing the potential impact of the increase in water rates for Beloit customers, WP&L will implement only 60% of the increase immediately, resulting in an initial increase of $1.61 for Beloit water customers. Beloit water bills will be increased in January 2003 to reflect the total amount of the increase authorized in the PSCW order.
The company filed for a $133.1 million increase in August of 2001. The company agreed to PSCW staff adjustments that brought the request down to $104 million. In March 2002, the company requested and the PSCW authorized an $18.9 million electric rate reduction due to lower projected fuel and purchased power costs. Revised estimates of fuel and purchased power costs were reflected in recently’s PSCW decision.
“WP&L continues to offer our customers an excellent energy value,” says Harvey. “This rate case has been a long and difficult process, but we believe the end result is fair to both our customers and our investors.”
Alliant Energy Corp., headquartered in Madison, Wis., is a growing energy-services provider with operations both domestically and internationally. Alliant Energy, through its subsidiaries and partners, provides electric, natural gas, water and steam services to over three million customers worldwide, including 442,000 customers in Wisconsin. Alliant Energy Resources, Inc., home of the company’s non-utility businesses, has operations and investments throughout the United States as well as in Australia, Brazil, China and New Zealand.
Source: Alliant Energy Corporation