El Paso Electric Fund Drive

With the holidays coming up, it’s time to consider those of us who are less fortunate.

Like those poor dears at the El Paso Electric Company.

The El Paso Times reports:

El Paso Electric had a profit of $59.7 million in the third quarter.

That’s 20 percent less than in the third quarter of 2016.

Let’s pass the hat to make sure they can afford more than Spam for Thanksgiving.

But wait!

Most of the profit decrease was tied to the company shifting $17.2 million in electric sales revenues from Jan. 12 through June 30, 2016, to the third quarter of 2016.

Those revenues were generated by higher rates that took effect Jan. 12, 2016, but were not reported until the third quarter of 2016, when Texas regulators approved the 2016 rate increase, company officials said.

So it’s just accounting smoke and mirrors. Hmm.

El Paso Electric is now in the process of getting another rate increase approved for its Texas customers for this year. It has a rate-increase agreement with the city of El Paso, which the company expects to be filed this month with the Texas Public Utility Commission.

Company officials expect the Texas PUC to approve the El Paso-area rate increase by the end of the year, [EPEC CEO Mary] Kipp told Wall Street analysts during a Wednesday conference call.

The pending settlement will allow the company to raise El Paso-area rates by $14.5 million, or an overall 2 percent increase. That’s $28 million less than the utility’s original $42.5 million request filed in February.

Thank God we’ve got City Council watching our back. So we dodged a $42.5 million bullet, and only got winged by the rate increase associated with a $14.5 million bullet. Hell, that’s just a flesh wound.

EPEC must have been all upset for not getting that extra $28 million. Right?

“Having a good relationship with the city is important” to the company, and the lower amount helps do that, Kipp said.

Wow, that’s generous of her. Imagine foregoing a $28 million necessary rate increase for the sake of community relations. She’ll probably go dumpster diving for Christmas presents this year. Like I do.

I wonder if Ms. Kipp attended that soiree with City Council at the Margo’s weekend before last?

And let’s see. EPEC’s profit in the second quarter of this year was up 62%, to $36.1 million. And they’re profit for 2016 was $96.8 million, up 18.2% over 2015.

Maybe we should have a warm clothing drive for those nice people at EPEC, in case they run out of hundred dollar bills to burn in their woodstoves.

And I bet City Council feels bad they can’t kick EPEC some tax relief.

2 comments

  1. You know, they have a GREAT scam going. Since they have a monopoly, El Paso Electric (a publicly traded company on the NYSE) can pay their stockholders magnificent dividends, while screaming to the state and the customers that they need to upgrade their infrastructure or build new plants and we need to pay for them with increased rates. If I had money, I’d be buying EPE stock with glee.

  2. I was at Albertsons the other day and got rammed by Mary Kipp at the checkout line for what I’m assuming was my posture of indecision. She’s a tiny little thing but boy, she sure has moxie!

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