PacifiCorp will be allowed to increase its rates by only 5 percent — much less than the 13 percent hike it had requested from the Oregon Public Utility Commission earlier this year.
The commission is allowing overall rates to go up next Jan. 1 by 5 percent, which would raise the average residential customer's bill by about $3.
The decision is the result of a stipulation reached between the various parties to the case in August. The stipulation represents a comprehensive settlement reflecting agreement among all the active parties in the rate case proceeding.
The actual amount will be adjusted this fall based on a final analysis of power costs, but it is capped at $43 million a year. PacifiCorp had asked for $116 million annually.
"Given where we arrived at when all was said and done, I agree with the others who examined this request and came to the conclusion that it represents a reasonable rate increase," commission Chair Lee Beyer said.
The decision means the average residential customer's monthly bill will go up from $67 to about $70, based on using approximately 1,000 kilowatt-hours of energy.
Costs were trimmed from several areas including PacifiCorp's operating and maintenance expenses, administrative and general expenses, federal and state income taxes and the company's authorized rate of return.
As part of the stipulation, PacifiCorp agrees to not file a new general rate revision case in Oregon before Sept. 1, 2007. The case is the first filed by PacifiCorp's new owners MidAmerican Energy Holding Co.
PacifiCorp serves about 530,040 customers in Oregon.
For more information about the commission order, visit http://apps.puc.state.or.us/edockets/orders.asp?ordernumber=06-530.