WUTC plans public hearings on Avista’s merger plans

Staff Report
Staff Writer

Staff members of the Washington State Utilities and Transportation Commission have reached a settlement on the proposed merger of Avista Corporation and Canada-based Hydro One Limited.
The settlement filed on March 28 lays out an agreement that the parties assert offers financial protections for Avista customers, provides more than $30 million in rate credits to Washington ratepayers over a five-year period, provides more than $11 million toward new and expanded low-income programs, provides for accelerated depreciation of Colstrip, Montana, power plants and sets aside funds for economic transition efforts in Colstrip.

The public will have a chance to comment on the merger and settlement at a series of WUTC hearings this spring. Hearing are scheduled for 1 p.m. on April 23 at the Spokane Valley City Hall, E10210 Sprague, and noon on April 24 at the Colville Public Library, S.195 Oak St. Additional hearing are planned in Othello (May 2) and Colfax (May 3).

In September 2017, Avista and Hydro One filed a joint application with the UTC to approve the companies’ proposed merger agreement.

Under the companies’ original proposal, Avista would become a wholly owned subsidiary of Hydro One, an investor-owned electric transmission and distribution utility headquartered in Toronto, Canada. Avista would maintain its existing corporate headquarters in Spokane, and would continue to operate in Washington under the same name, management team, and employee structure.

There’s more of this story to read online or in the April 4, 2018 S-E.
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