Indiana regulators authorize I&M to increase rates by about $84m

State regulators said that a 9.70% cost of equity is fair and reasonable for the company

American Electric Power’s Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) on March 12 said that the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission has authorized the company to increase its rates by about $84m, or a 5.7% overall increase.

The company said that the approved amount is about 48% of its original request.

I&M noted that if applied to residential rates, it would result in an increase of about $10 for a typical residential customer using 1,000 kWh of energy per month. The new rates will be phased in over two steps, with the first occurring later this month and the second in early 2021, I&M said.

According to the commission’s order, I&M had requested commission approval of an overall annual increase in revenues from its base rates and charges, including rate adjustment mechanisms, in the total amount of about $172m. The company had proposed to implement the requested revenue increase in three phases.

The company noted in its statement that it plans to offer incentives to expand electric vehicle charging. I&M also noted that that the “IM Plugged In” program will offer rebates and special rates for charging electric cars overnight along with incentives for businesses and fleet vehicles.

In its order, the commission said that the “IM Plugged In” program is a three-year pilot to encourage plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) adoption and it includes a number of tariffs, as well as incentives, targeting residential and small commercial PEV charging; multi-unit dwelling charging; commercial and industrial fleet and workplace charging; and electric vehicle education and technical development.

The commission said that I&M is directed, in advance of the program’s launch, to identify and define measurable metrics that will be used to determine the success of each pilot subset and, ultimately, enable the overall benefits for customers to be evaluated.

Among other things, the commission said that it concludes that a 9.70% cost of equity (COE) is fair and reasonable for the company.