Black Hills Energy submits proposal for new rates in Iowa

Published on June 04, 2021 by Dave Kovaleski

© Black Hills Energy
Nebraska pipeline project

Black Hills Energy has submitted a proposal to the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) for new rates that reflect various investments made in safety and reliability in the state.

Under the proposed rates, the average residential customer would see their bill increase by $2.02 per month based on the average monthly use of 63 therms. It is the first rate review request the company has made in over a decade. In that time, Black Hills Energy has invested over $250 million in its infrastructure in Iowa, including pipeline replacement and reliability projects, safeguarding meters, and farm tap fuel line upgrades.

“We are proud of our strong legacy of providing safe and reliable service through efficient operations to avoid the need to increase rates in over a decade,” Black Hills Energy vice president of operations Shirley Welte said. “Iowans need and deserve safe and resilient infrastructure. That’s why we’ve been updating our natural gas infrastructure across Iowa and have made significant improvements to our system.”

The investments in modern pipeline materials has also contributed to more than a one-third reduction in greenhouse gas emissions intensity for the company’s pipeline system since 2005.

Further, the company is looking to implement a five-year System Safety and Integrity Rider (SSIR) to prioritize safety-focused investments. The request also seeks to provide the High Efficiency Assistance Tool to assist customers in choosing natural gas appliances for their homes.

The company will implement a temporary increase in rates that will remain in effect until the IUB completes its proposal review. The temporary rate increase will be about $0.05 per month based on the average residential customer monthly usage of 63 therms if allowed by Iowa state law.