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PSC refuses changes to Evergy cost review 


JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Missouri’s Public Service Commission (PSC) denied a request to limit the scope of a review of costs related to Evergy Metro’s investment mechanisms. 

The company requested the PSC refine the scope of its review of Evergy’s Demand-Side Investment Mechanism (DSIM). The review covered the company’s refusal to enter a capacity-sale contract, which Evergy argued was not related to its DSIM. Evergy requested the review focus on the other element regarding the company and fees related to the mechanism. 

Commission Staff argued the costs were related to the DSIM and are applicable to the PSC’s review. The Office of Public Counsel (OPC) spoke in Staff’s favor, saying the costs were relevant to the review under the umbrella of DSIM. The commission opted to deny Evergy’s request despite further contention from the company over the scope of the review. 

The PSC also considered a case on Evergy West’s true-up filing submitted in June during Wednesday’s agenda meeting. The filing showed Evergy West had undercharged customers between March 2019 and February 2020, leading to an under-collection of nearly $4 million. The filing included a plan to collect this loss from customers via rate adjustments, which commission Staff approved. 

The commission followed up on an order given last week. The PSC ordered its Staff to compile responses from Missouri’s utility companies on the number of disconnections, late and past-due payments, and payment plans to decide how to recoup losses from the COVID-19 pandemic. The commission requested input from companies last week to gauge their responses to proposals from the commission. 

The deadline for comment from utilities is Aug. 31, and Staff has until Sept. 21 to file a full data report, after which the commission will consider all collected data to reach a decision. 

The commission approved an order regarding tariff sheets filed by the Missouri-American Water Company and allow them to go into effect on Aug. 21. The sheets substituted a past filing that included exceptions for fire and master service lines in Joplin and St. Joseph which commission Staff recommended be changed. 

The PSC also set a procedural schedule for a case involving Missouri-American’s request for accounting authority over losses resulting from the virus. The commission scheduled a series of hearings and statements to run from October to November.

The next PSC agenda meeting is set for Aug. 26. The meetings will remain remote for the foreseeable future due to COVID-19.

EDITOR’S NOTE: For up-to-date information on coronavirus, check with the CDC and DHSS.