The amount utilities can charge gas and electric customers is regulated by the Iowa Utilities Board, and board spokesman Don Tormey, says the utilities were required to come up with a plan to pay bay the tax savings.
“It was money that was would have been over collected because the tax rate was reduced from 35% down to 21%. So the rate-regulated utilities — Black Hills Energy, Alliant Energy, MidAmerican Energy — they all submitted proposals acted on last week,” Tormey says.
Black Hills Energy is returning $2.2 million to natural gas customers, while Alliant is returning $34.7 million and MidAmerican $33 million to their electric customers. Tormey says the money will be returned through credits on the electric and natural gas bills.
“I don’t know an exact dollar amount for each utility company, but it should be noted on the customer’s bill,” Tormey says, “It should say what it is for. Not all the refund mechanisms are the same.” He says the refunds should start showing up soon.
Tormey says the Utilities Board wanted to get the refunds to the customers as soon as possible, so they should be showing up in your next bill. Tormey says the IUB has the full information on the refunds on their website.
“If customers have any questions at all, first contact their utility company. And then if they don’t get the answers they are looking for then they can contact the board here and our customer service staff would be glad to help them,” Tormey says.
Tormey says the IUB will keep the tax case open to deal with utility company deferred taxes and any other issues. He says there could be more money coming back with customers based on tax law changes.