utility regulation

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MDU natural gas customers and Otter Tail Power Company electric customers will see some reductions in their monthly bills, starting March first.

That’s because the investor-owned utilities have started factoring in the effects of the corporate tax cut passed by Congress and signed by President Trump. Both utilities were granted interim rate increases while their main rate cases were pending before the Public Service Commission.

Dave Thompson

The federal tax cut bill could mean lower electric and natural gas rates.

That’s what the North Dakota Public Service Commission believes. The PSC has opened a formal investigation on the effect of the tax cuts on those rates.

Corporate tax rates went from 35 percent to 21 percent, effective January first.

The PSC will be asking Xcel Energy, MDU, Otter Tail Power and Great Plains Natural gas for information on how the tax cut will affect their finances.

MDU asks for natural gas rate increase

Sep 19, 2013

Montana Dakota Utilities Co. has filed for a natural gas rate increase.

The utility is asking for an overall 6.4 percent increase. For residential customers, the increase would be 9.5 percent.

"For a residential custimer, it would be about $5.15 a month," said MDU spokesman Mark Hanson. "What we're looking to do is recover costs for quite a bit of investment in our natural gas facilities, as well as technology upgrades."

Hanson says some of those upgrades benefit customers directly.

Mr. Clark goes to Washington

Jun 15, 2012
Dave Thompson / Prairie Public

Effective today (6-15-12), North Dakota has a seat on the five-member Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

As Prairie Public’s Dave Thompson reports, Public Service Commissioner Tony Clark says goodbye to North Dakota– and hello to Washington, DC.

PSC: No authority over electric service to casino

Jun 15, 2012

The Public Service Commission has dismissed a complaint by North Central Electric Cooperative against Otter Tail Power Company. As Prairie Public's Dave Thompson reports, the PSC says it doesn’t have jurisdiction.

The issue in question is service to a casino complex in Belcourt. It’s on trust land in the TurtleMountainreservation. The tribal government signed a 10-year contract with Otter Tail to provide power to the Sky Dancer Hotel and Casino. North Central Cooperative had served the original casino building.