SVE customers to see 5% increase
By CHUCK CLEMENT, Staff Reporter
Sioux Valley Energy sent out reminders this month that the electric cooperative's residential and farm customers will see an increase of about 5 percent in their May utility bills.|
For residential customers using about 650 kilowatt-hours in the summertime, their bill will increase by about $6 -- from $106 to $112.
SVE officials reported that the cooperative should have an overall increase of 5.1 percent in annual revenues, which they say will pay for rising wholesale power costs.
Sioux Valley Energy had projected its 2012 revenue at $62 million with the cooperative's total power costs estimated at $40.5 million.
Last year, SVE reported that its wholesale power supply costs increased by about $6 million. That increase in spending included a $4 million rise in power costs and a $2 million expense to support increased growth and capital additions in SVE's service area.
In 2011, Sioux Valley Energy had increased rates by an average 6.6 percent, and the cooperative's board of directors had approved an 8.7 percent increase in rates for 2012.
SVE officials have reported that the electric cooperative's suppliers have forecast possible rate increases in both 2014 and '15.
Within the 2013 rate increase, SVE's six primary customer classes will have different increases in their rates, such as farm and rural residents at 4.9 percent and residential and electric-heat customers at 5 percent. General-service customers, a category that includes small businesses, will see a 6.6 percent increase, large-power customers will pay a 4.3 percent increase, and irrigation users will have a 9.7 percent increase.
The cooperative's management has stated, "The percentage increase is different among the rate classes due to varying costs of providing service to each customer class. The different percentages help realign the classes closer to their actual cost of providing service."
In its announcements of the rate increases, SVE has said the cause of increased power supply costs is due to increased demand for electricity and federal and state regulations.
Experts who study the electric power industry in the United States have reported that the industry will experience heavy expenses in coming years. Those expenses include the replacement of aging infrastructure and the modernization of the nation's electric grid.
If EPA regulations remain in place, power companies are faced with retiring or renovating coal-fired power plants, changes in the disposal of coal ash, and limits on carbon emissions. The Nuclear Regulatory Agency also has proposals for added safety standards at nuclear-power plants.
Other expenses related to the suppliers of electricity include the installation of smart-grid technology and meeting some renewable-energy standards.
SVE customers can receive an individual rate analysis that will demonstrate how much more they will pay each month for their electricity use. They can call Sioux Valley Energy at 1-800-234-1960 and provide their account number from the latest utility bill. They will also need to provide the last four digits of the customer's Social Security number.
©Madison Daily Leader 2013
Send us your community news, events, letters to the editor and other suggestions. Now, you can submit birth, wedding and engagement announcements online too!
Copyright © 1995 - 2013 madisonet.com All Rights Reserved.