The Frankfort Plant Board is set to increase electric rates 7 percent after Kentucky Utilities raised wholesale electric costs $3.3 million.
The plant board, which buys bulk energy from KU, held a public hearing on the matter Thursday. No electric customers attended the meeting.
The new rate will cover the $3.3 million increase from KU and cost the average residential customer $6.15 more per month, said Vent Foster, FPB’s chief electrical engineer.
KU uses a formula approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to set wholesale electric costs each fiscal year, Foster said. A legal and consulting team representing KU’s municipal customers review the utility’s numbers.
Electric rates are set to go up July 1 if the FPB board approves the move at its June 19 meeting.
While customers will likely see an increase in their monthly electric bill this year, the plant board has lowered rates when KU asks for less.
“Last year it was a 2 percent decrease, and the plant board didn’t keep that money,” Foster said. “We passed it through (to electric customers).”
The plant board is also set to increase cable costs for bulk customers like Frankfort Regional Medical Center, Kentucky State University and office buildings.
Bulk cable one customers – namely the hospital and KSU – will see their cable costs increase 25 cents per cable outlet. Bulk cable two customers – mostly office buildings – will pay 65 cents more per outlet if the board approves the new rates.
FPB Cable Superintendent John Higginbotham said the newly renegotiated retransmission agreements with major networks and other cable costs caused the proposed rate increase.
New cable rates will take effect July 15. FPB residential cable customers have already seen an increase in their monthly bills to cover the increased costs.
In other action, the plant board agreed to renew its agreement with Mountjoy Chilton Medley LLP for auditing services in the upcoming fiscal year.
The firm will charge FPB no more than $29,925 to audit the utility, according to the agreement.