FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) will hold a meeting and teleconference next week to take public comments on the proposal by Kentucky Power Co. to purchase replacement electric generating capacity in order to retire the Big Sandy generating facility near Louisa.
Both the meeting and the teleconference will begin with a presentation by PSC staff on the regulatory processes governing the case and an overview of the Kentucky Power proposal.
The presentation by PSC staff and a question-and-answer period will begin at 5 p.m. EDT each day and last an hour. Public comments will follow at 6 p.m. EDT.
A local group has formed a petition, County Attorney Mike Hogan said. He said he had 600 - 700 signers. He has yet to send a copy of the petition or what it asks for.
Hogan did say it was an effort to put together a plan for development and not a handout.
Hogan said the power plant closing could hurt the local economy by a reduction of taxes paid the local taxing districts by Ky. Power. He said the downward spiral of coal in the local economy also should influence many citizens here to become more involved.
He also did not say what purchasing electricity in Hazard instead of Louisa will do. The coal used at the Big Sandy Plant is mostly non local but a good deal is purchased from the region.
A representative of the Sierra Club explained in an op-ed story that AEP has a moral and fiducial responsibility to assist in the development of impacted areas. (See Lazer Ediorials/Letters and go back a few months).
For those unable to attend a meeting, the presentation will be posted on the PSC website, psc.ky.gov, no later than the morning of the Louisa meeting.
The teleconference will be broadcast live on the PSC website. A video recording of the Louisa meeting will be made available on the PSC website.
Kentucky Power is seeking PSC approval of an agreement to purchase a 50 percent interest in Ohio Power Company’s Mitchell power plant, which is south of Moundsville, West Virginia. Kentucky Power and Ohio Power are both subsidiaries of American Electric Power Co.
The 780 megawatts of capacity from Mitchell would nearly replace the 800 megawatts generated by the larger of two units at the Big Sandy plant.
Kentucky Power has about 173,400 customers in 20 counties in eastern Kentucky. American Electric Power Co. is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, and has about five million customers in 11 states.
The Kentucky Power application and related documents are available on the PSC Web site. The case number is 2012-00578.
In addition to the public meetings, the PSC will conduct a formal evidentiary hearing in the case beginning at 10 a.m. EDT on Wednesday, May 29. The hearing will be held at the PSC offices at 211 Sower Boulevard in Frankfort. It will be open to the public and may be viewed live on the PSC website.
Written comments will be accepted through the conclusion of the evidentiary hearing. They may be mailed to the PSC at P.O. Box 615, Frankfort, KY 40602, faxed to 502-564-9625, e-mailed from the PSC website or submitted in person at the public meetings or at the PSC offices.
The PSC is an independent agency attached for administrative purposes to the Energy and Environment Cabinet. It regulates more than 1,500 gas, water, sewer, electric and telecommunication utilities operating in Kentucky and has approximately 90 employees.
Lazer Editor Mark Grayson contributed to this story. Meeting times and locations:
LOUISA (meeting) Tuesday, May 14, 2013, 5:00 p.m. EDT Lawrence County Community Center 205 Bulldog Lane WHITESBURG(teleconference) Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 5:00 p.m. EDT Room 203 Whitesburg Campus, Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College 2 Long Avenue HAZARD (teleconference) Wednesday, May 15, 2013, 5:00 pm EDT Multipurpose room University Center of the Mountains (UCM) Hazard Community and Technical College Main Campus One Community College Drive (Highway 15 South)
See story from last week HERE