KCC order requests transparency from AECOM, justification of redacted rate study report

Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 12:11 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Kansas Corporation Commission has ordered transparency fro AECOM and justification of their redaction of the electric rate study report.

The Kansas Corporation Commission says it has issued an order calling on the company which wrote part two of the Kansas Electric Rate Study to explain why the public version of the report is heavily redacted and to file an updated version by July 28, which is to remove redactions or provide legitimate justifications for confidentiality provided.

The KCC says the report AECOM filed on July 2 drew questions from Commission staff and criticism from other stakeholders upon discovery of much of the information used to form conclusions being deemed confidential. The Commission says rules allow confidential designations to protect sensitive data, like customer and pricing information, but confidential treatment must be justified.

According to the KCC, the rate study was commissioned by the 2019 Legislature in Substitute for Senate Bill 69 in order to assist future legislative and regulatory efforts in developing energy policy and that the number of confidential designations will prevent the Legislature from fully viewing the study.

“A meaningful publicly-available report is needed,” said Commission Chair Susan Duffy. “The findings in this report are important to Kansans because they will likely form the basis of future energy policy. The Commission strongly encourages AECOM and the utilities to redact only critically necessary information.” 

Commission staff says they are working with AECOM to examine confidentiality issues and assist in submitting a revised public version.

The KCC says the utilities subject to the study included electric public utilities, electric cooperative public utilities and the three largest municipally owned or operated electric utilities by customer count.

The July 2 submission of the rate study by AECOM can be viewed on the KCC website.

The order in its entirety can also be viewed on the KCC website.

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