TOPEKA – This morning the Kansas Corporation Commission approved Attorney General Derek Schmidt’s request to participate in three dockets investigating unusually high natural gas prices during the February winter weather event and how gas utilities plan to recoup the charges. The three dockets involve costs incurred by Kansas Gas Service, Atmos Energy and Black Hills Energy and their respective customer payment plan proposals.
“While our jurisdictional responsibilities are distinct, the KCC and Attorney General have a good track record of working together on behalf of Kansas customers. I welcome the AG’s participation in these proceedings to support its ongoing investigations,” said Commission Chair Andrew French.
On February 15, the Commission instructed all jurisdictional utilities to do everything necessary to ensure continued service to Kansas customers. The costs were deferred and each utility was required to file a proposal for recouping those charges, which must be approved by the Commission.
Around the same time, the Attorney General’s office announced an investigation to determine whether the unprecedented gas prices violated state consumer protection laws. That investigation continues.
On July 19, the Attorney General’s office filed a petition to intervene in the KCC cases citing the authority to enforce the Kansas Consumer Protection Act and protect consumers from suppliers who commit deceptive practices.
As an intervenor in the KCC cases, the Attorney General will have access to all documents filed, have the ability to file testimony, question witnesses and participate in any scheduled proceedings.