Prairie Public NewsRoom
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

RECs, IOUs cooperate on electric service areas

By Dave Thompson

Bismarck, ND – The executive vice-president of the North Dakota Association of Rural Electric Cooperatives says he hopes more co-ops and investor owned utilities will be able to work out service agreements -- as cities expand into areas normally served by the co-ops.

In Bismarck -- MDU and Capital Electric worked out an agreement covering areas of north Bismarck. And in Kindred -- Otter Tail Power and Cass County Electric Co-op reached an accord over who will serve what area.

Dennis Hill says we may see more of them down the road.

"The tool is in place," said Hill. "The Legislature did a good job of giving the electric utilities the tool they need to work out differences and get back on the page of doing orderly planning. This business is very expensive -- it's infrastructure-heavy. We just can't afford wasteful duplication."

The Capital-MDU case ended up in court before the two worked out an agreement.