Utilities push for overhaul of Missouri rate regulation

Missouri utilities are pushing for sweeping changes to state law that would limit the discretion regulators have over electric rates and allow for annual adjustments, which the companies say will encourage more investment in the electric grid.

Led by St. Louis-based Ameren Corp., the utilities argue that a new regulatory framework is needed to spur faster replacement of decades-old infrastructure and installation of advanced technologies such as “smart meters” that let ratepayers better manage their energy.

Two bills, SB 1028, sponsored by Rep. Rocky Miller, R-Osage Beach, and HB 2495, sponsored by Sen. Ryan Silvey, R-Kansas City, are circulating in Jefferson City. The bills would allow utilities to set rates based on what they spent in the prior year.

Under current law, utilities must file a rate case and face nearly a year of scrutiny from the Missouri Public Service Commission and its staff to win an electric rate increase.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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