Letter to the Editor: Grave Concerns Over Rocky Mountain Power Rate Increase

As a Hospital District, operating on razor thin margins in rural Wyoming, this rate increase cripples our ability to offer competitive medical services to our residents in Western Wyoming.

August 24, 20232 min read

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The following is a letter the Sublette County Hospital Board sent to the Wyoming Public Service Commission on August 24, 2023

Dear Honorable Members,

We are writing you to express grave concern regarding the electric utility rate increases proposed by Rocky Mountain Power.

As a Hospital District, operating on razor thin margins in rural Wyoming, this rate increase cripples our ability to offer competitive medical services to our residents in Western Wyoming.

Utility costs are skyrocketing at all levels, as are Property Taxes due to increased valuations. All these additional costs squeeze our ability to keep our doors open for the public we are chartered to serve.

As we have studied the Rocky Mountain Power proposal it appears it is occurring in large part due to the rapid switch from reliable fossil fuels to more sketchy and unreliable sources of power—wind and solar.

The unreliability of these sources goes against the Rocky Mountain Power mandate as a public utility to provide a long-term stable and reliable source of energy to its customer base.

We realize much of this is being forced on the utility by the national fever concerning climate change and alternative sources of energy. But the speed with which the company is moving makes this concerning to an entity such as ours. We need reliability and cost effectiveness. Our concern is the company has deserted its mission for another, which is not in the best interests of its customers.

Unfortunately for the customer base in the six-state operating area, this would appear to be only the first of many more large rate increases coming down the pike. Again, an organization such as ours, and the citizens we serve as a medical entity, cannot afford the increases and have more than a few concerns about the speed with which the company is moving to accomplish its “green energy” goals.

We urge the Commission to request RM Power to propose a slower and more balanced alternative energy schedule with less financial impact on its customers.

Sincerely,

Members of the Sublette County Hospital District Board of Trustees

Tonia Hoffman, Chair        

Dave Bell, Treasurer

Jamison Ziegler, Vice-Chair              

Kenda Tanner, Secretary

Ashley Tatro, Trustee

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