KCP&L Files Rate Increase Request with Missouri Public Service Commission

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Kansas City, Mo. (Feb. 24, 2016) — KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company, a subsidiary of Great Plains Energy Incorporated (NYSE: GXP), filed a request with the Missouri Public Service Commission to increase base rates for electric service for some of its Missouri customers. The Company is requesting to combine the two jurisdictions in the KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company area (Missouri Public Service and St. Joseph Light & Power) and is requesting an 8.2 percent rate increase. If approved, the increase would result in an average residential customer* paying approximately $9 more each month. The rate request process takes approximately 11 months in Missouri. New rates would be expected to take effect in January 2017.

It has been four years since KCP&L asked for a rate increase in this part of its service territory. Customers impacted by this rate increase request live in the areas that were formerly served by Aquila, which primarily includes Missouri cities outside of Kansas City. To better understand the areas impacted by this rate increase request, please visit www.kcpl.com/servicearea.

This proposed increase is needed to recover costs associated with additional regional transmission lines and for the numerous infrastructure and system improvements in the last several years to maintain the reliability of the electrical system, modernize the grid and enhance customer service.

“Our employees work hard to manage costs and ensure we provide electricity at competitive rates,” said Terry Bassham, President and CEO of Great Plains Energy and KCP&L. “However, in order to continue to provide reliable power and excellent customer service we’ve recently upgraded infrastructure and other critical systems. This request is a reflection of those significant investments that allow us to better serve our customers.

Part of the 8.2 percent increase request is an increase to the Customer Charge to $14.50 a month. The Customer Charge is a fixed monthly charge that includes the cost to provide service for each customer. The Company has also asked the Commission to continue reflecting fuel and purchased power increases and decreases in the Fuel Adjustment Clause on customer bills.

System Improvements and Infrastructure Upgrades

The electric grid that has been in place for more than 100 years was built to deliver power to customers as a one-way grid. The electric grid needed to serve customers’ needs today and in the future has evolved. A much more enhanced, dynamic two-way grid is required to meet customers’ electricity needs today. Over the past several years, KCP&L has invested millions of dollars to upgrade its electrical equipment, including the replacement of aging infrastructure and enhancement of systems needed to maintain and improve reliability. 

An example of infrastructure investments is the replacement of electric meters. The new meters will allow KCP&L to have a better understanding of system issues during power outages, which is expected to result in better response and restoration times.

In addition to making upgrades to its physical infrastructure, KCP&L also recently replaced several critical systems that allow the company to utilize more automation and smarter technology to better manage the grid and respond to power outages. These technological improvements not only allow the utility to provide reliable power, but are also expected to enhance its customer service. 

“It is important that we continue to invest in our system to provide our customers with the most reliable electrical service in the region,” said Bassham. “Whether a lineman in the field or Customer Contact Center representative on the phone, these infrastructure and system upgrades allow all our employees to provide an even greater level of service to our customers.”
 

Reliable, Clean Power

KCP&L has also made equipment upgrades to several power plants in order to reduce emissions and meet environmental regulations. 

Another reliability investment that is a part of this rate increase request is the addition of additional transmission lines in the region. The additional transmission capacity is expected to create greater opportunity for lower cost power to reach customers, allow for new renewable energy sources to be added to the system and reduce grid congestion. 

 For more information on this rate increase request, visit www.kcpl.com/MissouriRates.

* An average residential customer is defined as using 1112 kWh per month in the summer and 744 kWh per month in the winter.

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About Great Plains Energy: 
Headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., Great Plains Energy Incorporated (NYSE: GXP) is the holding company of Kansas City Power & Light Company and KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company, two of the leading regulated providers of electricity in the Midwest.  Kansas City Power & Light Company and KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company use KCP&L as a brand name.  More information about the companies is available on the Internet at: www.greatplainsenergy.com or www.kcpl.com


Forward-Looking Statements:
Statements made in this release that are not based on historical facts are forward-looking, may involve risks and uncertainties, and are intended to be as of the date when made.  Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the outcome of regulatory proceedings, cost estimates of capital projects and other matters affecting future operations.  In connection with the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Great Plains Energy and KCP&L are providing a number of important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the provided forward-looking information.  These important factors include: future economic conditions in regional, national and international markets and their effects on sales, prices and costs; prices and availability of electricity in regional and national wholesale markets; market perception of the energy industry, Great Plains Energy and KCP&L; changes in business strategy, operations or development plans; the outcome of contract negotiations for goods and services; effects of current or proposed state and federal legislative and regulatory actions or developments, including, but not limited to, deregulation, re-regulation and restructuring of the electric utility industry; decisions of regulators regarding rates the Companies can charge for electricity; adverse changes in applicable laws, regulations, rules, principles or practices governing tax, accounting and environmental matters including, but not limited to, air and water quality; financial market conditions and performance including, but not limited to, changes in interest rates and credit spreads and in availability and cost of capital and the effects on nuclear decommissioning trust and pension plan assets and costs; impairments of long-lived assets or goodwill; credit ratings; inflation rates; effectiveness of risk management policies and procedures and the ability of counterparties to satisfy their contractual commitments; impact of terrorist acts, including but not limited to cyber terrorism; ability to carry out marketing and sales plans; weather conditions including, but not limited to, weather-related damage and their effects on sales, prices and costs; cost, availability, quality and deliverability of fuel; the inherent uncertainties in estimating the effects of weather, economic conditions and other factors on customer consumption and financial results; ability to achieve generation goals and the occurrence and duration of planned and unplanned generation outages; delays in the anticipated in-service dates and cost increases of generation, transmission, distribution or other projects; Great Plains Energy’s ability to successfully manage transmission joint venture; the inherent risks associated with the ownership and operation of a nuclear facility including, but not limited to, environmental, health, safety, regulatory and financial risks; workforce risks, including, but not limited to, increased costs of retirement, health care and other benefits; and other risks and uncertainties.

This list of factors is not all-inclusive because it is not possible to predict all factors. Other risk factors are detailed from time to time in Great Plains Energy’s and KCP&L’s quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and annual report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of the particular statement.  Great Plains Energy and KCP&L undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.