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Northern Indiana Public Service Company’s (NIPSCO’s) residential electric rates ranked second-highest among the utilities the IURC regulates, as of July 1, 2015. *
Major components in a typical electric bill include base rates, trackers, and sales taxes.
Base rates cover most of a utility’s operating and maintenance costs. They make up about 87 percent of a typical NIPSCO residential bill.
NIPSCO is seeking an electric rate increase in a pending IURC case. The OUCC is inviting written consumer comments with an IURC public field hearing scheduled for Monday, December 14, 2015 in Hammond. For more information and for updates on the pending rate case, please click here.
NIPSCO's current electric base rates were approved in 2011. News releases from July 2011 and December 2011 offer a summary. The 2011 order resolved issues that were raised in NIPSCO’s previous electric rate case. The OUCC’s May 2009 news release summarizes the agency’s testimony.
In addition to base rates, NIPSCO and other electric utilities recover and credit separate, specific costs through rate adjustment mechanisms known as "trackers." The OUCC reviews all tracker rate adjustments in IURC cases on a regular basis.
NIPSCO is authorized to use 7 electric trackers. They make up about 13 percent of a residential customer’s typical bill.
Of particular interest, NIPSCO received approval of a 7-year, $1.07 billion plan for infrastructure improvements, along with approval of a new tracker to recover the costs. The tracker is known as the Transmission, Distribution, and Storage System Improvement Charge (TDSIC) and received legislative approval in 2013.
However, NIPSCO’s plan and TDSIC tracker were challenged before the Indiana Court of Appeals, which reversed parts of the IURC’s order and sent the case back to the IURC for further action. In September 2015, the IURC ordered NIPSCO to refund all money collected through the electric TDSIC tracker. NIPSCO agreed to the refund in a May 2015 settlement agreement as described here.
Also, NIPSCO is seeking approval of a new energy efficiency plan that would increase rates over the next three years.
Tracker Recovers Costs for Frequency IURC Cause No. Fuel Adjustment Clause (FAC) Coal and other fuels Quarterly 38706 Transmission, Distribution & Storage System Improvement Charge (TDSIC) Projects in 7-year infrastructure plan Semi-Annual 44371 Environmental Cost Recovery (ECR) Emissions control equipment (including operations & maintenance) Semi-Annual 42150 Demand Side Management (DSM) Energy efficiency programs Semi-Annual 43618 Resource Adequacy Adjustment (RA) Capacity resources needed for system reliability Semi-Annual 44155 Regional Transmission Operator (RTO) Participation in Midcontinent Independent Transmission System Operator (MISO) Semi-Annual 44156 Federally Mandated Cost Adjustment (FMCA) Critical infrastructure protection Semi-Annual 44340
To view the IURC's files for tracker cases, click here and enter the appropriate docket number.
The seven percent state sales tax applies to all Indiana electric utilities.
* Rankings and examples refer to monthly usage of 1,000 kWh in the IURC’s 2015 Residential Bill Survey.