Avista files rate proposals in Washington that would not impact customer bills
Company’s filing seeks to recover costs while providing tax benefits to customers
SPOKANE, Wash., Oct. 30, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today Avista (NYSE: AVA) made multiple filings with the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (WUTC or Commission)
that, if approved, would allow the Company to recover costs for infrastructure and other investments without increasing customer bills. The filings include electric and natural gas general rate
cases, a tax customer credit, and a deferral request related to implementation of the Company’s Wildfire Resiliency Plan.
“The last year has been punctuated by the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic and crisis, and we’ve all had to quickly adapt as things changed so significantly,” Avista President and CEO Dennis Vermillion said. “While Avista responded to the situation created by the crisis, we maintained our focus on our essential service and providing our customers with safe, reliable and affordable energy. This means that we’ve continued to make important and necessary investments in our infrastructure. We’ve continued to install smart meters, replace wooden distribution poles, take steps to meet our clean electricity goals, invest in customer facing technology, replace natural gas pipe, upgrade substations, protect against wildfire and much more. We’ve made these investments on behalf of our customers because it’s the right thing to do. Our customers expect the energy to be there when they need it.
“Once we make these investments, we need to recover the costs. The ongoing effort to align the rates customers pay with Avista’s costs to serve is one of the main reasons we file general rate requests. We’re mindful of when we file rate cases to minimize the impact to our customers and have chosen to move forward at this time to reduce a more significant financial impact for customers in the future. We understand that it’s challenging and often frustrating when we file rate cases and that many people are struggling right now. This is why we’ve worked hard to identify how we can move forward in a way that doesn’t increase the burden for our customers at this time while also acknowledging the financial investment we’ve made in infrastructure, on their behalf. Through the use of a Tax Customer Credit, our proposal would completely offset an immediate increase in electric and natural gas bills.
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