On Jan. 1, 2015, KCP&L filed a request with the Kansas Corporation Commission to increase rates for Kansas customers by 12.5 percent. Most of the $67.3 million revenue generated by the increase will be used to recover the costs associated with federally mandated environmental upgrades and reliability investments.
What will this rate increase mean for you? For the average Kansas residential customer, this rate increase will equate to an additional $11.67 per month, or about $144 more per year. The approval process takes about eight months to complete. If approved, the new rate will go into effect on or about October 1, 2015. A similar rate increase request is currently in the approval process for Missouri KCP&L customers.
The revenue generated by the Kansas rate increase will be allotted in the following ways:
- LaCygne coal-fired plant – The LaCygne plant is one of KCP&L’s largest and lowest cost coal-fired power plants. It provides a significant amount of the power that homes and businesses in the region rely on. The rate increase will be used to install emission scrubbers to reduce pollution and provide cleaner air. The upgrades are needed to comply with federal and state regulations that will become effective in June and will allow KCP&L to continue operating the plant.
- Wolf Creek nuclear power plant – Upgrades to the Wolf Creek power plant, including replacing water pipes, will allow KCP&L to maintain safety and ensure lower cost, reliable, emission-free power to customers.
- Infrastructure and reliability improvements – Revenue from the rate increase will allow KCP&L to make investments to improve the infrastructure and maintain their reliable service. This includes modernizing the infrastructure, replacing electric meters to help identify outages faster, expanding the tree trimming program, building additional transmission lines, and replacing equipment at power plants.
As part of the rate increase, KCP&L is also requesting to offer a payment assistance program that would offer a monthly bill credit of up to a $65 for eligible Kansas customers to help them manage their energy costs. A similar program is already available to Missouri customers.