AGA Survey and Statistics System; AGA-CEE Natural Gas Efficiency Programs Survey: Utility expenditures for gas efficiency programs exclude data that have not been released by participating companies at the state level; U.S. Energy Information Administration; and U.S. Department of Transportation.
Statewide Elected Officials Next Election: 2018
Sam Brownback (Rep.)Governor
Jeff Colyer (Rep.)Lieutenant Governor
Derek Schmidt (Rep.)Attorney General
Legislature Next Election: 2018Session Dates: 01/11/16-late May
Term: 4 year
President: Susan Wagle
Vice President: Jeff King
Senate Majority Leader: Terry Bruce
Senate Minority Leader: Anthony Hensley
Senate Member Breakdown
House of Representatives
Term: 2 year
Speaker of the House: Ray Merrick
Speaker Pro Tempore of the House: Peggy Mast
Majority Leader: Jene Vickrey
Minority Leader: Tom Burroughs
House of Representatives Member Breakdown
Kansas Corporation Commission Commissioners: Gubernatorial appointment, Senate confirmation: 4 year termChairperson: Elected by fellow Commissioners: Indefinite term
Shari Feist Albrecht (I), Commissioner Appointed by Governor Sam Brownback in 2012; term expires in 2016; Elected Chairman in 2014
Pat Apple (R), Commissioner Appointed by Governor Sam Brownback in 2014; term expires in 2018
Jay Elmer (R), Chairman Appointed by Governor Sam Brownback in 2014; current term expires in 2019
The Kansas Energy Report (formerly known as the Kansas Energy Plan) contains the energy policy recommendations developed annually by the Kansas Energy Council (KEC). The KEC was dissolved by Governor Sibelius via Executive Order at the end of 2008, so there has been no update since the 2009 version of the report.
Summary of key recommendations:
Endorse policies that promote declines in GHG emissions, not policies that merely shift emissions within or between regions; The State of Kansas should adopt a goal of increasing EE such that the rate of growth in electricity peak demand and total energy is 50% less than it would have been absent the EE initiative.
In January of 2015, the Kansas legislature took up House Bill No. 2482. This bill states that it shall be the policy of the state to value demand-side program investments equal to traditional investments in supply and delivery infrastructure as much as is practicable, but public utilities shall not be required to offer, implement or continue demand-side programs. The bill also provides that the commission shall permit public utilities to implement commission-approved demand-side programs and cost recovery mechanisms .
On May 13, 2014, Commission Staff (Staff) filed a Report and Recommendation (R&R) urging the Commission to initiate a General Investigation regarding the development of distribution infrastructure for natural gas in rural Kansas. In the R&R, Staff recommended a general investigation that explores the rights, duties, and obligations that should be expected of a gas provider or consumer regarding the following: (1) Developing or relinquishing certificated territory held by existing public utilities; (2) Allowing open competition/multiple Certificates of Convenience and Necessity to entities wishing to distribute natural gas in rural areas; (3) Providing transparency and objectivity in line extension policies; (4) The appropriate mechanism for recovery of line extension costs that encourages rural development without cross-subsidization of customer classes; (5) The use of customer specific Certificates of Convenience and Necessity and what, if any, obligation to serve exists for the certificated utility to serve future customers; and (6) The ability to access gas supply from interstate pipelines.
The Kansas Corporation Commission acted on Staff’s recommendation and opened an investigation on June 12, 2014. This matter is presently pending.
In 2006, the Kansas State Legislature passed the Gas Safety and Reliability Policy Act, which approved the implementation of a gas system reliability surcharge (GSRS) between 0.5% and 10% of revenues to recover new infrastructure replacement costs not already included in rates; Atmos, Black Hills, and Kansas Gas Service utilize the surcharge.
GSRS balances are rolled into base rates in its next rate case. GSRS riders may be used for up to five years (or up to six years under certain circumstances) and the utilities must file new rate cases if their riders are to remain in place. GSRS rate changes may not be requested more frequently than every 12 months. Annualized GSRS revenues may not exceed 10% of the utility's base revenue level, as approved in its most recent rate case. GSRS rate changes are not permitted if they are less than 0.5% of the utility's base revenue level, or $1 million, whichever is lower.
On March 12, 2015, the Kansas Corporation Commission opened the General Investigation Regarding the Acceleration of Replacement of Natural Gas Pipelines Constructed of Obsolete Materials. In the Order Opening General Investigation, Staff reported that after meetings with Kansas natural gas utilities and Commission work studies, they had developed a framework with eleven parameters for a pipeline replacement program that could be uniformly applied to Kansas natural gas utilities. This proceeding is presently pending.
In its August 2015 rate filing, Atmos Energy proposed to implement a system integrity program (SIP) rider that would allow the company to accelerate the replacement of certain obsolete components of its distribution system. The SIP rider, which would be in place for a five-year pilot term and would be updated on a quarterly basis, is intended to address the "capital investment lag" associated with the GSRS and a $0.40 per customer, per month statutory cost recovery cap that applies to the GSRS. This proposal was rejected on March 17, 2016.
Kansas Gas Service owns and operates 2 CNG stations in Kansas and has a Compressed Natural Gas General Transportation Service rate schedule in its tariff. WEC Energy Corp. subsidiary Trillium CNG owns and operates a station in Salina.
Through its subsidiary, Questar Fueling Co, Questar Corp. gas built CNG Stations in Kansas City and Topeka.
Weather normalization adjustment clauses are in place for Atmos Energy, Black Hills/Kansas Gas Utility, and Kansas Gas Service.
In its August 2015 rate filing, Atmos proposed to establish an annual review mechanism (ARM) that would allow the company's rates to be adjusted annually. The ARM, which would prospectively include investments to be made by the company, would eliminate the need for comprehensive rate cases and filings that would occur otherwise. The mechanism would reflect all of the regulatory procedures, principles, and rate-of-return parameters authorized by the KCC in the instant case. This matter is presently pending.