Columbus, Neb. – The message is nearly the same from Nebraska Public Power District. NPPD retail and wholesale customers will see no overall average electric rate increase in rates for 2019, following action Thursday by the utility’s Board of Directors.
NPPD President and CEO Pat Pope praised work done by District employees as they continue to implement long-term, cost cutting measures that do not impact service, reliability, or jeopardize safety for customers or employees. “We are proud to offer our customers another year of rate stability,” said Pope. “The NPPD team is constantly seeking ways to maintain rate competitiveness, both regionally and nationally. We established an initiative that utilizes the rates charged to our wholesale customers and measure them against similar organizations with the objective to be in the lowest quartile.”
This will be the second consecutive year of no rate increase for NPPD’s wholesale customers, and, over a six-year period, NPPD has had less than a two percent increase in its wholesale electric rates for customers that includes 46 municipalities and 24 rural public power districts and rural cooperatives that rely totally or partially on NPPD for wholesale power supply.
“Our wholesale electric rates are very competitive when compared to more than 800 other power suppliers we benchmark against,” said Pope. “On the retail side, NPPD has kept its electric rates stable for end-use customers for five years straight. Next year will be six.”
“Our retail employees continue to meet the challenge to reduce costs and improve processes which continue to pay dividends for our customers, This past year also was the beginning of a three-year plan to install new advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) for 90,000 customers, and we are already seeing evidence that the installation of the equipment has a positive influence on costs“ said NPPD’s Retail General Manager Tim Arlt. The remainder of the AMI installations will occur in 2019 and 2020.
Seventy-nine communities in NPPD’s service territory are served at retail and include communities such as Scottsbluff, Kearney, York, Norfolk and Plattsmouth.
Based on 2017 data released in November from the Energy Information Administration, NPPD’s base retail electric rates rank 17th overall of utilities nationwide. NPPD benchmarks its wholesale rate with the National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation’s wholesale power cost. Several years ago, NPPD established a goal of being in the lowest quartile, (25 percent) and, in 2018, reached the 26-percentile mark in the most recent comparisons against over 800 other utilities.