Black Hills Power reaches a settlement with PUC

PIERRE — Residential customers of Black Hills Power would pay 5.7 percent more for their electricity under a deal pending before the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission.

Most general-service customers would see an increase of 7.6 percent, while large general-service and industrial customers face a 6.1 percent hike.

The commission scheduled a special meeting for Sept. 17 to consider accepting the settlement that has been jointly proposed by PUC staff and Black Hills Power.

The changes would take effect Oct. 1 if the commission approves.

Black Hills Power’s original application in December sought a 9.94 increase in revenues. The goal was to generate an additional $13.7 million of annual revenues.

The settlement calls for a 6.4 percent increase for an additional $8.8 million.

Rate increases in South Dakota frequently result from settlements by the PUC staff rather than proceeding to full hearings before the commission.

The commission recently canceled the Oct. 8-9 hearing that was previously scheduled for Black Hills Power.

Black Hills Power raised rates on an interim basis effective June 16. Under the plan, refunds are to be made to customers, because the interim rates were higher than those in the settlement.

The company estimates the average residential refund will be $10.50.

The commission also will consider at the Sept. 17 meeting a series of confidential agreements reached between the Rapid City-based utility and various customers.

Those include Wal-Mart, the South Dakota Science and Technology Authority, GCC Dakotah, Rushmore Forest Products, Spearfish Forest Products, Pete Lien and Sons, Rapid City Regional Hospital, and Menard’s-Dakota Panel.

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(4) comments


No. The Pioneer is not screening comments based on business, however, libelous comments will not be accepted and the Pioneer will screen these out.


I would hope that the Pioneer is not screening comments on BH Power based on business because they need to be called to the table!


Anything to stop this company from ... it's customers! It is amazing when a company has no competition, how far they are allowed to jack the price of their product up before anyone takes action at which time it is generally too late. And......they don't even provide good customer service! I recall going to pay my bill with cash and was on the phone with my mother outside when I noticed the employee leaving the office and locking the door. I asked to pay my bill and was told I would have to wait until the employee returned from lunch. I certainly wasn't going to leave cash without a receipt so I had to leave work and come back again! Point being.......if that were a business with competition......that wouldn't be acceptable but where else am I supposed to get electricity?????? It's a shame that we have to pay through the nose to get a necessity and then to get served like we are just another pig in the slaughter house! West River Electic Association in RC blows the doors off of this ... organization and the people running it should be ashamed to admit that they jack up our prices so they can expand their business in another State and yet our own State execs approve it!!!!!! Unbelievable!!!! I am pretty sure that if I told a customer that they were going to have to pay more because I wanted to expand my business in another jurisdiction that they would no longer be a customer but then again......they have options. BHP customers don't have options so they step all over them and the State lets them!!!!!

(Edited by staff.)


We need solar power now. Although, like Italy is trying to do in their insanity, would SD legislators simply try taxing the sunlight? Related - the number 1 selling automobile in Norway is the Tesla Model S. Let's stop developing technology to dig-up coal and destroy the water and put our collective brain power toward development of solar power!

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