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News & Press: Legislative

MPUA utilities fight for $12.8 million in customer savings

Friday, April 5, 2019  
Posted by: mpuaonline
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MPUA members were in the State Capitol this week fighting for a project that will lower customer energy bills. HB 1062, a bill designed to kill the Grain Belt Express project, was heard in the House General Laws committee on Monday. The sole aim of HB 1062 is to stop Missourians across the state from seeing lower-cost utility payments.

The Grain Belt Express will benefit 350,000 Missourian across 39 communities in the state. Local, municipal, utilities are set to begin receiving power from the project under negotiated contracts designed to save their customers more than $12.8 million in annual electrical rates, once the line is operational.

Several MPUA towns testified in opposition to HB 1062, as well as MPUA/MJMEUC CEO Duncan Kincheloe.

“I would be surprised to see Missourians turn down new jobs and massive utility savings, especially without the need for state subsidies,” said Kincheloe. “We’re just asking that this project be treated under the same rules as any other.  It’s late and unfair to change the rules now.”

Eight MPUA communities joined MJMEUC and MAMU representatives to testify against the bill. Thanks to the cities of Hannibal, Higginsville, Kirkwood, Lamar, Marshall, Odessa, Rolla, and Shelbina for testifying in support of lower electric utility costs.

Joining MPUA members and leaders where the transmission project owner, a landowner representing those supportive of the project, a county commissioner representing the counties supportive of the economic activity created by the project, and the IBEW supporting the jobs to be created by the project. In all, 16 testified in support of the project and opposed to the bill.  

Only 11 testified to kill the project.

The bill passed out of the General Laws Committee by a vote of 9-4 on Tuesday. The next day, the Rules Committee deemed the bill ready for debate and put it on the House calendar for debate by a vote of 6-3. MPUA expects the issue to be debated by April 16.



Duncan Kincheloe, President and General Manager of the Missouri Public Utility Alliance, testifies in opposition to HB 1062.


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