Utility Dive: Justice Department, FTC urge FERC to expand competition for building new transmission, deny utility exclusivity

Posted August 18, 2022
Categories: Uncategorized

There is bipartisan support for transmission competition. FTC voted 5-0 (no more than three Commissioners can be of the same political party). Trump’s DOJ also supported transmission competition. Four of the five FERC Commissioners recently defended competition in a concurrence.


WPR: Utilities set to spend more than $2B on new transmission lines in Wisconsin

Posted August 2, 2022
Categories: Uncategorized

Manufacturers and customer groups are very concerned about MISO’s additional regulatory barriers to transmission competition and the unnecessary costs passed along to the ratepayers.

Four commissioners attached a concurrence that expresses concern “that existing processes may not adequately protect consumers with regard to the selection and construction of many transmission projects. This order has the negative consequence of expanding the scope of projects for which the transmission owner has less incentive to reduce cost and maximize benefits to the greatest extent possible.”


WEPCO and WPL coal-fired plants to run longer due to reliability and supply chain concerns

Posted June 23, 2022
Categories: Uncategorized

Given the amount of all the fossil fuel retirements in the region, plus the rising costs and supply chain issues, now is a good time to raise questions regarding the speed and cost of the massive utility capital spend in Wisconsin. We still need to address the problem of rate recovery for power plants that are about to be retired. The current total for all the unamortized balances in Wisconsin is over $2 billion. See more details in the articles in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and Wisconsin State Journal.


Rate cases pending, plus interruptions are more likely this year

Posted April 28, 2022
Categories: Uncategorized

WEPCO filed for a base rate case seeking an average 8.4% increase and industrial increases of 11-14% in 2023. WPSC filed for a rate case seeking an average 6.2% increase and industrial increases of 5-9%. MGE has a rate case limited reopener with an average proposed electric increase of 4.4%. In addition, rising natural gas prices and conditions in the regional market will have a significant impact on Wisconsin’s industries. WIEG is currently forming ad hoc intervention groups to mitigate the rate increases and advocate for favorable cost allocation and rate design for large customers.


Coalition efforts to block passage of monopoly construction legislation

Posted March 15, 2022
Categories: Uncategorized

WIEG helped build a coalition to defeat this anti-competition, anti-consumer legislation in the 2021-2022 session. Although the bills failed to advance out of committee, we need to keep this coalition together as utilities may try to revive the bill in 2023.