The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) on Dec. 27 ordered all rate-regulated utilities to report to the commission on the impact passage of the new federal tax law will have on their customers. The new law, signed by President Donald Trump on Dec. 22, is expected to reduce the amount utilities will pay in federal taxes.
Utilities have until Jan. 19 to file their comments with the Commission (Case No. U-18494) on how they propose to return savings to ratepayers. Other interested parties will have until Feb. 2 to respond to utility proposals.
The special meeting was called to make sure the savings are calculated from the effective day of the federal legislation, which is Jan. 1, 2018, Commission Chairman Sally Talberg said.
The commission will then determine how and when the savings will flow back to ratepayers.
“While regulatory accounting isn’t always the most headline-grabbing topic, the guidance the Commission is providing in today’s order is important because it maximizes our future options as we sort through the totality of impacts the new federal tax law will have when it takes effect Jan. 1,” Commissioner Rachael Eubanks said.
“The information we receive in this docket will be incredibly useful in understanding the magnitude of the expected reduction in federal taxes that the utilities pay, which is likely to be significant. It will also provide broader input regarding the appropriate avenue for how to extend benefits to customers.”
The order applies to Alpena Power Co.; Consumers Energy Co.; Detroit Thermal, LLC; DTE Electric Co.; DTE Gas Co.; Indiana Michigan Power Co.; Northern States Power Co.; Upper Peninsula Power Co.; Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp.; Wisconsin Electric Power Co.; Presque Isle Electric and Gas Co-Op; Michigan Gas Utilities Corp.; and SEMCO Energy Gas Co.