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The Retail Energy Supply Association, and a group of sixteen end users, in separate letters, have urged Indiana lawmakers to pursue an evaluation of retail electric choice.
As previously reported, legislation this spring urged the legislative council to assign to the regulatory flexibility committee the topic of electric customer choice programs. The regulatory flexibility committee is currently engaged in this review of electric choice.
In a letter to the committee, RESA said, "RESA encourages the Committee to carefully consider and engage in further examination to see how electric industry restructuring and the introduction of competition will help the State of Indiana meet its future energy needs. RESA respectfully requests that the Committee recommend to the entire Legislature that legislation be considered resulting in the restructuring of the electric industry so that all customers are afforded the right to choose their electric supplier."
"If the Committee does not feel like it has enough information to make such a recommendation, RESA recommends that the Committee should initiate a broad investigation into the potential benefits associated with electric industry restructuring," RESA said.
The sixteen customers also urged the committee, in its report to lawmakers, to recommended, "a comprehensive study on the benefits of electric restructuring."
The customers cited the $1.5 billion cost overrun for the Duke Energy Edwardsport plant as supporting the need to transfer risks from customers to private investors, and pointed to the needed investment to make power plants compliant with new environmental regulations as adding urgency to this issue.
Indiana businesses have seen their electricity rates shoot up nearly 62 percent over the last 10 years, the customers said.
Customers signing the letter included:
The Andersons, Inc.
Big Lots Stores Inc.
Boston Market Corp.
Lowes Homes Centers Inc.
Mayer Management Inc.
Peru Pizza Co. Inc. and Captain Development Co. Inc (Daland Corp. affiliates)
Quality Supply Chain Inc. (on behalf of Wendy’s Restaurant Operator members in Indiana)
Rite Aid Corp.
Wabash Valley Pizza Hut Inc.
Wal-Mart Stores Inc.
Watkins Take-Home Restaurants, Inc.