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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
March 9, 2010, at 2:30 P.M. CST
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota


Chairman Dusty Johnson called the meeting to order.  Present were: Vice Chairman Steve Kolbeck; Commissioner Gary Hanson; Executive Director Patty Van Gerpen; Commission Attorneys John Smith and Rolayne Wiest; Staff Attorney Karen Cremer; Staff Analysts Tim Binder, Bob Knadle, Stacy Splittstoesser, Jon Thurber and Dave Jacobson; Consumer Affairs Supervisor Deb Gregg; and Administrative Secretary Anissa Grambihler.

Also present were:  Lee Magnuson, Lynn, Jackson, Schultz and Lebrun PC, representing Black Hills Power; Chris Kilpatrick, Todd Brink, Kyle White, and Linn Evans, Black Hills Power; and Steve Willard South Dakota Electric Companies.

Joining the meeting by telephone were:   Andrew Moratzka, Mackall, Crounse & Moore, PLC, representing Black Hills Industrial Intervenors; and Jana Linderman, Plains Justice representing Residential Consumers Coalition.


1.         Approval of the Minutes of the Commission Meeting Held on November 24, 2009, December 8, 2009, January 5, 2010, and January 19, 2010. (Staff: Demaris Axthelm)
Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the Minutes of the November 24, 2009, December 8, 2009, January 5, 2010, and January 19, 2010.  Motion passed 3-0.

Consumer Reports

  1. Status Report on Consumer Utility Inquiries and Complaints Received by the Commission.  (Consumer Affairs:  Deb Gregg) 

            Ms. Deb Gregg reported that the Commission received a total of 119 contacts since the last report was prepared for the February 23, 2010, commission meeting.  18 contacts involved telecommunications services; 48 contacts involved electrical services; 7 contacts involved natural gas services; 1 contact involved gas and electric service, 6 contacts involved cell phone services; 15 contacts were related to the Do Not Call registry, 1 contact involved the Keystone Pipeline, 5 contact involved the Keystone XL Pipeline, 1 contact was related to the Grain Warehouse Division and 17 contacts involved issues not regulated by the Public Utilities Commission.   In 2010, 599 of the 645 complaints registered have been resolved.  In 2009, 2,535 of the 2,537 complaints registered have been resolved.


1.      EL09-018        In the Matter of the Application of Black Hills Power, Inc. for Authority to Increase its Electric Rates. (Staff Analysts: Bob Knadle, Dave Jacobson, Terri LaBrie Baker, Jon Thurber, Tim Binder, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

See link to view the transcript:

            Commissioner Hanson moved that the Commission approve Black Hills Power's request to implement a reduced interim rate increase on April 1, 2010, in lieu of the proposed rate increase in its rate filing as would otherwise occur under SDCL 49-34A-17; and that the Commission require Black Hills Power to keep an accurate account in detail of all amounts received by reason of the increase, specifying by whom and in whose behalf the amounts are paid as provided under SDCL 49-34A-17.  Motion passed 3-0

            Chairman Johnson moved that the interim rate cannot go into effect until Black Hills Power files its conforming tariff sheets with the Commission, which shall be reviewed by staff for conformity with the Commission's decision.  Motion passed 3-0.

There being no further business, at the hour of 4:08 p.m., the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting adjourned. The next Commission meeting is scheduled for March 23, 2010.

/S/Anissa Grambihler       
Anissa Grambihler
Administrative Secretary
April 6, 2010