MADISON, Wis., April 4 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Wisconsin Power and Light
(WP&L) today received the final order from the Wisconsin Public Service
Commission (PSCW) in its 2003 rate case. After adjusting for increased fuel
costs based on current market conditions, the final order granted WP&L an
overall increase of $81.1 million (9.78 percent) comprised of $77.1 million
(11.78 percent) in retail electric revenues, $3.6 million (4.71 percent) in
retail natural gas revenues, $269,000 (6.17 percent) in retail water revenues
in Beloit and $100,000 (9.73 percent) in retail water revenues in Ripon. New
rates will become effective on April 5.
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The PSCW followed its standard practice of updating fuel costs to reflect
current market conditions before making its final decision. Based on updated
fuel costs, the estimated rate increase discussed at the Commission's open
meeting on March 13 was adjusted upward, but should not have an earnings
impact on WP&L. Including these adjustments, the PSCW granted approximately
66 percent of WP&L's revenue request and authorized a return on equity of 12.0
"While the adjustment due to the dramatic increase in fuel prices on the
wholesale market should not change the earnings impact of this rate decision
for WP&L, we know it does have a dramatic impact on our customers," says Bill
Harvey, president of WP&L. "We will continue in our efforts to help our
customers use energy wisely and, like them, would welcome a decrease in fuel
prices over the coming months."
The State of Wisconsin has in place a regulatory procedure that allows
utilities to request a change in rates for both increases and decreases in
variable fuel and purchased power costs within specific limits. Under this
process, WP&L would file for a change in rates related to fuel costs if fuel
costs should increase or decrease in the near future.
"Across the country, the cost to provide safe, reliable and
environmentally sound utility service to customers has increased," says
Harvey. "WP&L continues to offer its customers an excellent energy value when
compared both within the state and across the nation. Nonetheless, we
understand that any rate increase has an impact on our customers, and we will
continue to do all that we can to operate efficiently and minimize increases
while still maintaining service reliability."
Based on today's order, typical WP&L residential customers using 600 kWh
of electricity per month will see their average monthly bill increase by $6.32
to $58.36. The monthly bill of typical residential natural gas customers using
820 therms annually will increase by $1.57 to $57.30. Residential water
customers in Beloit will see their average monthly bill increase to $15.64, a
60-cent increase. In Ripon, residential customers will see their average
monthly water bill increase by $1.42 to $17.80.
WP&L will implement seasonal electric rates as part of this rate change.
Seasonal rates result in higher per kilowatt-hour rates in the summer, when
the costs to meet electrical demand are generally higher, and lower per
kilowatt rates the rest of the year when costs are generally lower. From June
1 through September 30, the price per kilowatt-hour for a residential customer
will be 9.160 cents. The price per kilowatt-hour for residential customers
will drop approximately ten percent the rest of the year to 8.259 cents.
Seasonal rates will result in higher annual bills for customers with high
summer usage and lower annual bills for customers with low summer usage
compared to what they would have experienced without seasonal rates.
"Seasonal rates more accurately reflect the actual costs of providing
service to our customers," says Harvey. "With seasonal rates, customers who
conserve in the higher-demand summer months are rewarded for using energy
Alliant Energy Corporation is an energy holding company based in Madison,
Wis. Alliant Energy's utility subsidiaries provide electric, natural gas and
water services to 1.3 million customers throughout the Midwest. Wisconsin
Power and Light serves approximately 430,000 retail electric customers and
170,000 retail natural gas customers. On the non-regulated side of the
business, Alliant Energy has subsidiaries that operate utilities in targeted
international markets and another that is working to increase generation
capacity in select regions of the United States. For more information, visit
the company's Web site at www.alliantenergy.com.
SOURCE Wisconsin Power and Light Company