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Informational Guide | previous page


South Dakotans have a variety of ways to stay informed about PUC dockets.

Review the electronic docket. A docket is the continually updated collection of documents filed with the commission for a particular case. Dockets are accessible under the Commission Actions tab on the PUC website, www.puc.sd.gov. Dockets are labeled to correspond with their type and filing date. For example, Black Hills Energy’s rate request docket is EL21-011; EL for electric, 21 for 2021 and 011 to indicate it was the 11th electric docket filed with the commission in 2021.

Submit comments. Members of the public are encouraged to submit written comments about an active rate case to the PUC. These informal public comments are reviewed and considered by the PUC commissioners and staff. Comments should include the docket number or name of the company proposing the rate increase, commenter’s full name, mailing address, e-mail address and phone number. These comments should be emailed to puc@state.sd.us or mailed or hand delivered to PUC, 500 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, SD 57501. Comments are posted in the “Comments” section of the docket within a reasonable time after having been received. The commenter’s name, city and state will be posted along with their comment. Comments received from businesses, organizations or other commercial entities (on letterhead or with the business name listed in the signature block, for example) will include the full contact information for such. Please follow these guidelines when submitting written comments to the PUC:
  • For comments sent by email, the maximum file size is 10 MB. If you have questions, please contact South Dakota PUC staff at 605-773-3201 (Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Central Time).
  • For comments sent by U.S. mail or hand delivered, no more than twenty (20) 8.5” x 11” pages, including attachments and support materials, should be submitted with a comment. Sheets with printing on both sides are counted as two pages.
  • A reference document, article or other attachment not written by the person commenting should clearly identify the source of the content. The inclusion of any copyrighted material without accompanying proof of the commenter’s explicit right to redistribute that material will result in the material being rejected.
  • In instances where individual comments are deemed to be a duplicate or near duplicate copies of a mass message campaign, the PUC will post only a representative sample and list the name, city and state of the commenter.
  • Comments containing threatening language or profanity will be rejected.
  • Multimedia submissions such as audio and video files will not be accepted as written comments.
  • Electronic links will not be accepted.

Become an intervenor. Individuals who wish to be formal parties in a docket may apply to the commission for intervenor status. Intervention deadline is clearly indicated within the docket. Intervention is appropriate for people who intend to actively participate in the case through legal motions, discovery (requests for facts or documents), the written preparation and presentation of actual evidence, and in-person participation in a formal hearing. Intervenors are legally obligated to respond to discovery from other parties and to submit to cross-examination at a formal hearing. Individuals seeking only to follow the progress of a docket or to offer comments for the PUC’s consideration need not become intervenors.

Communicate on record. Verbal communication between a commissioner and a person with an interest in a matter before the commission that does not occur in a public forum or as part of the official record should be avoided. Those who communicate in writing with a commissioner about an open or imminent docket matter should understand that their comments will become part of the official record and subject to review by all parties and the public. Likewise, comments made at a PUC public proceeding or submitted to the commission relative to a docket matter become part of the record, open to review by all parties and the public. Because commissioners have a decision-making role in docket matters, any discussion with a commissioner about an open or imminent docket must take place in an open forum, such as a public meeting, with notice given to all parties.