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Avista reaches settlement in Idaho electric rate case

Avista Corp. reached an all-party settlement in its pending general rate case in Idaho, agreeing to reduce its annual billed electric revenues by 2.84%, or approximately $7.2 million.

The revenue decreases are based on a 9.5% return on equity with a 50% common equity ratio and a 7.35% rate of return, according to an Oct. 11 news release.

Avista originally sought a revenue increase of 2.1%, or $5.3 million, effective Jan. 1, 2020. The request was based on a proposed rate of return of 7.55% and a return on equity of 9.9%.

According to the utility, the difference between the settlement and its request is the continued recovery of wind power purchase agreements, including those for the Palouse and Rattlesnake Flat facilities, through the power cost adjustment mechanism instead of base rates.

The settlement agreement is still subject to approval by the state Public Utilities Commission. If approved, the new rates would take effect Dec. 1. Residential electric customers using an average of 900 kWh per month would see a billed decrease of 86 cents per month, or 1.0%, for a revised bill of $84.45.

The actual percentage rate change will vary by customer class and will depend on how much energy a customer uses. (Idaho PUC Case No. AVU-E-19-04)

Avista serves more than 133,000 electric customers in Idaho.