The settlement agreement includes economic development and job training support for Lawrence County, where Big Sandy Plant is located, and surrounding Kentucky counties totaling $233,000 per year for five years, increase its Home Energy Assistance (HEAP) contribution by 20 percent and supply funding for energy management programs for schools (all of these items cannot be recovered from ratepayers).
Also, the Company will increase the amount the company spends on energy efficiency programs by $3 million over the next three years. Additionally, the settlement provides protections against unreasonably higher costs due to unanticipated greenhouse gas regulation.
“We are is pleased that the Kentucky Public Service Commission approved the transfer of the Mitchell generation and agreed that this is the most cost-effective way to meet federal environmental rules and continue providing reliable, affordable electricity to all our customers,” said Greg Pauley, president and chief operating officer of Kentucky Power. “We care about the employees who work at Big Sandy and the businesses and residents in Louisa and Lawrence County and are committed to working with them through the transition.”
Big Sandy Unit 2 is expected to continue operating until 2015. Any Big Sandy employee who is affected by the changes at the plant and unable to obtain a new position within Kentucky Power or other AEP affiliates will be provided a severance package.