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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
December 7, 2010, at 9:30 A.M. CDT
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota


Chairman Kolbeck called the meeting to Order. Present were: Commissioners Gary Hanson and Dusty Johnson; Commission Attorneys: John Smith and Rolayne Wiest ; Commission Advisor: Greg Rislov; Staff Attorneys: Karen Cremer, Kara Semmler and Ryan Soye; Staff Analysts: Dave Jacobson, Brian Rounds, Brittany Mehlhaff, Ross Pedersen, Bobbi Bourk, and Chris Daugaard; Consumer Affairs Supervisor Deb Gregg; and Administrative Secretary Demaris Axthelm.

Also present were: Brett Koenecke, May Adam Gerdes & Thompson, representing the electric utility companies regarding the CapX2020 project; Jim Wilcox, Xcel Energy; Kevin Kouba, Otter Tail Power Company; Dan Nelson, Midcontinent Communications; and Chris Nelson

(NOTE: For the purpose of continuity, these minutes are not necessarily in chronological order.)


  1. Approval of the Minutes of the Ad Hoc Commission Meeting Held on November 16, 2010. (Staff: Stephanie Harmon)

Commissioner Johnson moved to approve the minutes of the ad hoc commission meeting November 16, 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 78 contacts since the last report was prepared for the November 23, 2010, Commission meeting. 18 contacts involved telecommunications services; 15 of the contacts involved electrical services; 12 contacts involved natural gas services; 1 contact was related to gas and electric service; 11 contacts involved cell phone services; 9 contacts were related to the Do Not Call registry; 1 contact was related to Wind Energy; 1 contact was related to the Grain Warehouse; and 10 contacts involved issues not regulated by the Public Utilities Commission. In 2010, 2,595 of the 2,644 complaints registered have been resolved.


1.      EL10-016        In the Matter of the Application of Great River Energy and Northern States Power Company d/b/a Xcel Energy for a Permit to Construct a 10.6 Mile, 345 kV Transmission Line (CapX2020) in Brookings County Near White, South Dakota (Staff Analysts: Brian Rounds, Joshua Williams, Ross Pedersen, Chris Daugaard, Staff Attorneys: Karen Cremer, Ryan Soye)

         Mr. Brett Koenecke, representing the electric utilities regarding the CapX2020 project, stated that the initial filing fee of $8,000 was submitted at the time of the filing. Ms. Karen Cremer, Staff Attorney, stated that pursuant to SDCL 49-41B-12, the Commission has the ability to assess a filing fee not to exceed $64,000 and confirmed that the initial deposit of $8,000 was received at the time of filing. Ms. Cremer stated that Staff recommended the Commission assess a filing fee not to exceed $64,000.

         Vice Chairman Hanson moved to assess a filing fee in docket EL10-016 not to exceed $64,000, with an initial deposit of $8,000 in order to account for actual expenses incurred in review of the filing commencing from the filing date. Motion passed 3-0.

2.      EL10-017        In the Matter of the Filing by Otter Tail Power Company for Approval of Tariff Revisions (Staff Analyst: Brittany Mehlhaff, Staff Attorney: Ryan Soye)

         Mr. Ryan Soye, Staff Attorney, stated that the service agreement that supersedes the expiring contract with deviation was in need of revisions and once the revisions were complete, Otter Tail Power Company would be resubmitting the service agreement with the Commission. Mr. Soye asked that no action be taken at this time.

         The Commission took no action on this item.


1.      TC10-098        In the Matter of the Filing for Approval of a Type-2 Wireless Interconnection Agreement between Qwest Corporation and T-Mobile, USA, Inc. for the State of South Dakota (Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

         Ms. Kara Semmler, Staff Attorney, stated the agreement was properly filed, properly executed and does not appear to contain discriminatory provisions. No comments were filed and Ms. Semmler recommended approval of the agreement.

         Commissioner Johnson moved to approved the Type-2 Wireless Interconnection Agreement between Qwest Corporation and T-Mobile USA for the state of South Dakota. Motion passed 3-0.

There being no further business, at the hour of 9:38 a.m. the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission meeting adjourned. The next Commission meeting is scheduled for December 21, 2010.

/S/Stephanie Harmon       
Stephanie Harmon
Administrative Secretary
January 4, 2011