The Bonneville Power Administration will raise its average wholesale power rate by 7.1 percent and its average transmission rate by 4.4 percent for fiscal years 2016 and 2017, the regional marketer of hydroelectric power said Thursday. The rates take effect Oct. 1.
Clark Public Utilities receives approximately 60 percent of its power from BPA. “Currently, it is expected that the fourth quarter increase in BPA costs will be absorbed into the 2015 budget,” Clark Public Utilities said. “The new rates will then be factored into 2016 budget planning in the fall. The 2013 BPA rate increase was absorbed without a change in Clark Public Utilities’ retail rates.”
BPA said the rate increases support investments in the federal hydropower system and expansion of its high-voltage transmission system. Specifically, BPA tied the need for power rate increases to capital-related costs, increased operations and maintenance expenses, and expected increases in fish and wildlife programs, among other factors. The transmission rate increases are due to the need for new construction and replacement of existing assets, as wall as integration of renewable energy and increased security, BPA said.