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RCA to decide on AEL&P rate increase Friday

Posted: August 24, 2011 - 7:43pm

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska will deliver its decision on Alaska Electric Light & Power’s requested permanent rate increase on Friday.

Commission Section Manager Ann Wilde said they hope to do so by 5 p.m. but have until a midnight deadline to announce the decision.

AEL&P is requesting a 24 percent permanent increase in its energy components over originals rates. Customers have been on a 20 percent interim increase until this decision.

This 20 percent affects the energy portion of customers’ bills, thus raising the actual bills about 18.5 percent. This interim charge also increases AEL&P revenues by 18.5 percent.

The 24 percent request would raise average customer bills and AEL&P revenues by 22.1 percent beyond the rate the utility received prior to the interim increase. AEL&P states if the request is approved, the average residential electric bill would go up around $16 per month.

Princess Cruise Lines and Greens Creek Mine are not included in the rate case because they are under special contracts.

AEL&P spokeswoman Debbie Ferreira said the utility management isn’t sure what to expect and is now just waiting for the announcement.

Bill Burk of the Juneau People’s Power Project, which argued against the increase in the RCA hearings, said he doesn’t think the increase will be for the full 24 percent requested. He said that his talks with the attorney general’s office indicate it may only be about 13 or 14 percent. Still, he said there’s no real way to know until Friday.

“Everyone’s either curious or worried about it, even at AEL&P,” he said.

• Contact reporter Jonathan Grass at 523-2276 or at jonathan.grass@juneauempire.com.

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