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Colo. PUC dismisses Black Hills utility's plan to buy natural gas reserves

The Colorado Public Utilities Commission dismissed 'sapplication to acquire natural gas reserves, saying the plan is a "seriousrisk to [taxpayers]."

The PUC voted 3-0 in favor of the motion, saying in anApril 27 statement that Black Hills Colorado failed to produce enough evidence aboutthe plan's short- and long-term costs.

The motion to dismiss Black Hills Colorado's applicationwas filed by the state Department of Regulatory Agencies' Office of Consumer Counsel.

The BlackHills Corp. subsidiary applied for proposed investments in natural gasreserves in October 2015. The proposal included a gas hedging agreement with anaffiliate to acquire 50% of its forecast annual firm gas demand, with the expensesrecovered from ratepayers, according to the PUC statement.

In December 2015, the PUC asked for additional informationregarding costs, but Black Hills Colorado failed to give most of the informationasked of it in its supplemental testimony.