Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Davis Motor Sales banner ad
Posted on 2/2/14

fair rates 300HENDERSON, Ky. (5/16/13) – A new coalition launched today to speak out in favor of fair and reasonable utility rates for western Kentucky electricity consumers. Fair Rates Kentucky mobilized after Big Rivers Electric Corp, which sells power to various co-operatives including Kenergy Corp, Jackson Purchase Energy Corporation and Meade County Rural Electric Co-Op., announced plans for a series of rate increases that could dramatically increase utility costs for residential customers, businesses, schools, hospitals and churches.

According to coalition organizers, Big Rivers proposed the massive rate increases after recently losing 70 percent of their consumer base per an agreement reached with local aluminum smelters. Instead of adequately adjusting their business model to meet the new demand, they have requested a $74.5 million base rate increase from the Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC). This increase would be paid for by their rural western Kentucky customers.

Fair Rates Kentucky, jointly founded by Aleris, Domtar and Kimberly-Clark, all of whom have large investment and employee bases in the impacted area, is mounting a grassroots campaign to call attention to the proposed rate increases and make sure that the voices of western Kentucky utility consumers are heard.

“Big Rivers wants to keep operating most of the same power generation capacity and power plants whether there is demand or not,” Kelly Thomas, senior vice president and general manager of Aleris Rolled Products North America. “This just simply isn’t a viable option for Kentucky families and businesses already struggling in tough economic times.”

According to Big Rivers, the first of several rate increases will be implemented as early as August 20, and will cost the average residential consumer nearly $300 more per year—a 23 percent rate increase for most of their customers. The next and potentially even larger increase is scheduled for early next year.

“If Big Rivers is allowed to pass along these planned rate increases this summer and early next year, then Kimberly-Clark’s local power cost to operate our plant could nearly double,” said Dan Lachmann, Mill Manager for Kimberly-Clark’s Owensboro Mill. “Manufacturing is as competitive a business right now as it has ever been and this is not a realistic or sustainable approach to solving the underlying problems at Big Rivers.”

The new coalition is asking those who oppose these rate increases to take action by signing a petition at www.FairRatesKY.com and by contacting Governor Steve Beshear and the Public Service Commission.

“We are simply asking Big Rivers to do what any other business would do when they are faced with market challenges—adapt without forcing their customers to pick up the tab,” said Steve Henry, General Manager with Domtar’s Hawesville facility. “You wouldn't pay for gas that isn't in your car’s tank, nor would you pay for food you aren't going to eat, so why should schools, hospitals, churches, businesses, and residents pay for power plants we aren’t going to use?”

Fair Rates Kentucky is a coalition of western Kentucky residential and business utility consumers who want to pay fair and reasonable rates for electricity. More information is available at www.FairRatesKY.com.

SurfKY News
Information provided by Rachel Bledsoe

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week

January 23, 2015 8810

Local Church's Faith Restored; 71 Souls Saved…

in Video by Gary Gates, SurfKY News
January 22, 2015 7197

Nortonville Man Accused of Selling Drugs near…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Jail
January 21, 2015 6299

KYDOT Pre-Treating Roads Thursday in Antipation…

in Top News For All Sites by Keith Todd
January 22, 2015 5875

MCEA Head: Further School Mergers Might Ease…

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Paul McRee, SurfKY News
January 23, 2015 5732

Parents Face Charges after Marijuana Joint Falls…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Jail
January 21, 2015 4913

Man Arrested after Allegedly Nodding off on Baby…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Jail
January 25, 2015 4778

Dean’s List Announced

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Joyce Riggs
January 23, 2015 4568

Nortonville Woman Charged for Meth Possession

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Hopkins County Sheriff's Office/Hopkins County Detention Center

Most Read This Month

January 08, 2015 20655

Woman Claiming to be 'Lady Gaga' Tours Town in…

in Top News For All Sites by Madisonville Police Department
January 15, 2015 20433

UPDATE: Fatality Victim's Name Officially Released

in Top News For All Sites by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Stories Trending Today

January 26, 2015 3781

KSP Arrests Two on Child Porn Charges; MPD…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Trooper Stu Recke
January 26, 2015 3231

Man Goes to Jail after Allegedly Attacking Family

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department/Hopkins County Jail
January 25, 2015 2803

Juvenile Hit by Vehicle at McDonald's

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by GPD Officer Wes Miller
January 26, 2015 2008

Madisonville Post Welcomes New Troopers

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Trooper S. C. Recke
January 26, 2015 1942

School Board Votes 3-2 for Utility Tax

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
January 26, 2015 1811

Hopkins County Sheriff's Reports Released

in General News For All Sites by Hopkins County Sheriff's Office
January 26, 2015 1672

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Jan. 26, 2015

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
January 26, 2015 1623

Hopkins District Court Fines Handed Down

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Circuit Clerk's Office
January 26, 2015 1562

Kentucky Highway Crews Prepared for Snow into the…

in Top News For All Sites by Keith Todd
January 26, 2015 1246

McClearn Remains Optimistic I-69 Signs up Between…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Keith Todd
January 26, 2015 1057

Raffle for Custom Motorcycle to Benefit Trooper…

in General News For All Sites by Sherry H. Bray
January 26, 2015 1003

Dawson Springs Police Reports Released

in Hopkins News by Melissa Heflin