The Public Service Commission is proposing new rules that would increase the amount of bonding a grain elevator has to carry.
Commissioner Randy Christmann holds the elevator portfolio. He says there’s been some concern over bonding covering payments to farmers when an elevator goes bankrupt.
"The bottom line is -- there have been some very minimal repayments to producers<" said Christmann. And he says the last time this was addressed was in 1999.
"It's been a long time," said Christmann. "A lot of inflation, a lot of change in the industry, where we have fewer and fewer grain warehouses, but more and more grain capacity. They're merging as well as growing. So it seems like a good time for a revisit."
Christmann says a state audit of the PSC also recommended higher bonding levels.
For a new elevator license, the bonding requirement would be about 30 percent higher than it is now. But he says for elevators that show a faster turnaround for scale tickets, they could get a break on those requirements.
The PSC will hold a formal hearing on the proposal later.