Swanson: Curtail interim rate hikes

  • Article by: DAVID SHAFFER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 31, 2012 - 6:49 PM

Minnesota's attorney general wants utilities to prove their cases for higher rates before any increase is granted.

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dirtydogsDec. 31, 1211:11 AM

Thank you for looking out for the consumer and the residents of Minnesota.

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garagewineDec. 31, 1211:20 AM

But I'm sure she has no problem with five consecutive years of rate freezes.

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tombutlerDec. 31, 1211:30 AM

Go get 'em Lori

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sek2undrstndDec. 31, 1211:31 AM

How about we take the amount of money Xcel Energy would have used to upgrade their nuclear power plants and use that to provide low-interest loans for people to install solar power or geothermal for their homes? Then use the money generated from the repayment and interest to fund more loans for more solar power and geothermal installs.

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therabbiDec. 31, 1211:37 AM

Since power is a necessity, why isn't this run as a non-profit? Ditch the corporate jets, pay reasonable wages and forgo the profit motive - especially when they can jam a rate increase down out throats for no good reason.

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mylittleidDec. 31, 1211:47 AM

This just seems like common sense. Why should utilities get to consistently overcharge their customers? Since public utilities have no competition, the only restraint they have on overcharging their customers is the Public Utility Commission. Utilities shouldn't be allowed to increase their rates until that commission approves those increases. I'm glad we have an Attorney General who is looking out for the citizens of this state rather than the big-money corporations and special interests.

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BadgerDec. 31, 1211:58 AM

Considering the CEO of Xcel Energy is one of the five highest paid people in Minnesota, thank you Lori Swanson for looking out for the rest of us!

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sek2undrstndDec. 31, 1212:10 PM

"But I'm sure she has no problem with five consecutive years of rate freezes." .... Yet somehow the company has continued to increase their dividends from .238 per share in 2008 to .27 per share in 2012. If they can continue to keep increasing their dividends then I don't think they are hurting for operating capital and/or cash flow.

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atlaskleinDec. 31, 1212:29 PM

Dec. 31, 12 11:31 AM "How about we take the amount of money Xcel Energy would have used to upgrade their nuclear power plants and use that to provide low-interest loans for people to install solar power or geothermal for their homes? Then use the money generated from the repayment and interest to fund more loans for more solar power and geothermal installs." The reason that this is not a good idea is that it costs 8-10 times more to generate power this way than with utility scale generation. We would be much better off giving more state tax credit to Community-Based Energy Development at utility scale sizes. (CBED). Any way you look at it, incentivizing homeowners to own solar panels is a BAD idea for the country. Investing as a community in utility scale solar and wind is a GOOD idea where all of the generation is large, local, accessible and easy to maintain at a much lower overall cost to the country.

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WHIMSEYDec. 31, 1212:35 PM

No more free loans for Xcel or Centerpoint? Oh what a drag. Still cannot get over the fact we are encouraged to conserve and then we get slapped in the face with rate increases and to add salt to the wound they made it clear more increases on the way. Something very wrong with the system! Maybe we need more commom folks on these commissions.

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