WEB EXTRA: Xcel Energy Electricity Rate Case Filing Fact Sheet

Created: 03/04/2013 1:38 PM KSTP.com By: Jennie Olson

Xcel Energy asked the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to authorize an increase in base electricity rates. Here's a fact sheet, courtesy of Xcel Energy:

Request

-    $285 million, a 10.7 percent increase in overall rates
-    A typical residential customer’s monthly bill would increase by approximately 12 percent, or about $9, based on use of 675 kilowatt-hours.
-    A typical small business customer’s monthly bill would increase by approximately 10.6 percent, or $11.30, based on use of 976 kilowatt hours.
-    A typical large business customer’s monthly bill would increase by approximately 9.5 percent, or $309, based on use of 40,000 kilowatt hours.
-    10.6 percent rate of return on equity (currently 10.37 percent)

Case Drivers

-    Investments and costs to extend the lives of and operate the Prairie Island and Monticello nuclear plants and to expand power output at the Monticello plant ($114 million or 40 percent of total increase and nearly 60 percent of new investment)
-    Investments and costs to refresh, upgrade and operate the electricity grid and other power plants ($56 million or 20 percent of total increase and about 40 percent of new investment)
-    Increases in property taxes due primarily to increased investments ($40 million or 14 percent of the total increase)
-    Rates will also be reset to reflect current customer usage and wholesale sales, which are lower than the level in Xcel Energy’s last rate case ($75 million or 26 percent of total increase)

Key Points

-    Extending the lives of the Prairie Island and Monticello nuclear plants and expanding output at Monticello offer the low-cost options for customers and a resource for the future that produces no greenhouse gases or emissions associated with acid raid or smog. Investments are required now as a condition for extending the lives of these plants for another 20 years.
-    Electricity is an essential service and needs to be available 24/7. Unlike other companies, Xcel Energy cannot eliminate a third shift or parts of our operations in response to changed demand.
-    While all customers share in the costs of keeping the electricity system dependable and safe, Xcel Energy can help manage the impact of this increase through its extensive suite of programs to manage and reduce bills.

Timeline

-    Jan. 1, 2013: Interim rates take effect (see below)
-    Spring-Summer 2013: Public hearings
-    Fall-Winter 2013: Minnesota Public Utilities Commission consideration and final action
-    First Quarter 2014: New rates take effect

Interim Request

Xcel Energy is requesting an interim increase during the time the case is under review, as allowed under Minnesota statute:

-    $251 million, a 9.4 percent increase in overall rates, effective Jan. 1, 2013
-    A typical residential customer’s monthly bill would increase by approximately 10 percent, or about $8, based on use of 675 kilowatt-hours.
-    A typical small business customer’s monthly bill would increase by approximately 10.2 percent, or $10.80, based on use of 976 kilowatt-hours.
-    A typical large business customer’s monthly bill would increase by approximately 9 percent, or $262, based on use of 40,000 kilowatt-hours.