HENDERSON, Ky. (AP) — Three industries have filed notice that they intend to appeal a recent decision allowing Big Rivers Electric Corp. to increase rates.
Last month, the Kentucky Public Service Commission approved agreements allowing Century Aluminum — the utility's biggest customer — to leave the Big Rivers system and purchase power on the open market. That led Big Rivers to request a rate increase for its remaining 112,000 customers in western Kentucky.
The PSC hasn't approved the increase, but it did allow the utility to begin charging higher rates subject to refunding customers money if a smaller hike is approved.
The Gleaner (http://bit.ly/14OisvD) reports that Kentucky Industrial Utility Customers filed the notice of appeal with Franklin Circuit Court on behalf of Kimberly Clark paper mill, Domtar paper mill and Aleris aluminum rolling mill.
"Our position at the commission was, we did not oppose market pricing for Century, but we asked the commission (to insist that) ... once the Hawesville smelter became profitable (thanks to buyer cheaper power on the open market) that Century could pay for stranded costs or the excess (generating) capacity on the Big Rivers system to reduce the burden on the remaining customers," KIUC attorney Mike Kurtz said Wednesday.
"The commission didn't accept (that proposal), so we've appealed to the courts," he said.
A PSC spokesman declined to comment on the filing.
Information from: The Gleaner, http://www.thegleaner.com/