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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting

Tuesday, December 12, 2006, at 9:30 A.M.

Room 412, State Capitol Building

Pierre, South Dakota



Present were: Chairman Dustin Johnson; Commissioner Steve Kolbeck ;Executive Director Patty Van Gerpen; Deputy Executive Director Heather Forney; Commission Advisor Greg Rislov; Commission Attorneys Rolayne Wiest, and John Smith; Staff Attorney, Kara Van Bockern; Staff Analysts Keith Senger, Harlan Best, Dave Jacobson, Brian Rounds  and Bob Knadle;  and Administrative Secretary, Demaris Axthelm.


Also present were: Dave Gerdes, May, Adams, and Thompson representing Northwestern Corporation and BBI Glacier, subsidiary of Babcock and Brown Infrastructure Limited; Bill Taylor, Woods,Fuller,Schulz and Smith representing Heartland Consumer Power District and South Dakota Power Company; Darla P. Rogers; Riter, Rogers, Wattier & Brown, representing East River Electric and Basin Electric.


Joining the meeting by telephone was Vice Chairman Gary Hanson




1.         TC05-047   In the Matter of the Proceeds from Bonds and Other Security for the Benefit of Customers of S&S Communications (Staff Attorney:  John Smith)


            On March 2, 2005, the Commission received a Petition from Commission Staff to open a docket for the administration and distribution of proceeds from bonds and other security (Proceeds) received by the Commission for the benefit of customers of S&S Communications (S&S). On or about June 3, 2003, S&S ceased providing wireline telecommunications service, for which several hundred South Dakota customers had pre-paid. On August 28, 2003, the Commission issued its final decision in Docket TC02-166 revoking S&S's certificate of authority. Staff has been attempting to collect on two bonds issued by Allied Insurance in the face amounts of $50,000 and $75,000 which had been cancelled by Allied effective July 28, 2001 and October 30, 2001, respectively. On November 27, Staff received a settlement offer from Allied for both cancelled bonds in the amount of $30,000. 


            Mr. John Smith recommended that the Commission approve the Settlement offer from Allied for both of the cancelled Bonds in the payment amount of $30,000 and requested that the Executive Director and General Counsel be authorized to execute the release.


Commissioner Kolbeck moved to accept the Settlement offer of $30,000 and to authorize and to execute the release. Chairman Johnson seconded and Vice-Chairman Hanson concurred Motion passed 3-0


Gas and Electric


1.         GE06-001  In the Matter of the Merger between NorthWestern Corporation and BBI Glacier Corp., a Subsidiary of Babcock & Brown Infrastructure Limited  (Staff Analyst:  Dave Jacobson,  Staff Attorney:  Kara Van Bockern)


See transcript:



Chairman Johnson moved that the commission find that the Jurisdictional threshold has not been met and that, therefore the commission does not have jurisdiction to approve or disapprove the merger between Northwestern Corporation and Babcock & Brown Infrastructure Limited.  Commissioner Kolbeck seconded and Vice Chairman Hanson concurred. Motion passed 3-0.


Meeting adjourned.



Demaris Axthelm

Administrative Secretary