For Immediate Release:
Feb. 13, 2014

Contact: Kyle Aubuchon/Courtney Lauer
(573) 751-4843
Overearnings Complaint Filed Against Ameren Missouri

JEFFERSON CITY - Sen. Doug Libla, R-Poplar Bluff, of the 25th District, commends Noranda Aluminum in New Madrid for filing an overearnings complaint with the Missouri Public Service Commission (PSC) against electric utility provider Ameren Missouri.

Key consumer groups across the state, including the AARP, Consumers Council of Missouri, Missouri Association for Social Welfare, who are members of the Fair Energy Rate Action Fund, support this filing because it saves ratepayers potentially millions of dollars a year. Noranda’s filing states Ameren is exceeding the 9.8 percent rate of return on equity authorized by the PSC. Currently, there is no mechanism for refunds if an investor-owned utility over-earns.

“Noranda’s filing with the PSC will protect the benefits it provides to Missouri’s economy, workforce, and rate payers,” stated Sen. Libla. “Noranda’s plant is Ameren Missouri’s largest electric customer. It pays for a significant amount of Ameren’s fixed costs that benefits all other ratepayers. Everyone would see a significant rate hike if Noranda began buying electricity on the open market as allowed by state law.”

Noranda employs more than 900 Southeast Missourians and provides more than $300 million economic benefit annually. The competitive landscape for electricity provided to aluminum producers in the United States has, and is, changing dramatically. If Noranda’s cost of electricity is significantly higher than the cost to its competitors, the viability of this plant is jeopardized. Noranda currently pays the second highest electricity cost of the nine aluminum smelters operating in the United States.

Ameren Missouri has raised Noranda’s annual electricity costs at the New Madrid smelter by $44 million since 2009. Rates have increased for all other rate payers by 43 percent over the last six years. In addition, fuel adjustment surcharges have been raised $499 million in the last four years. Reports from the St. Louis Post Dispatch revealed last spring Ameren Missouri earned $80 million more than authorized in 2012, and this filing suggests that Ameren continues to over-earn.


Our hard-working families and businesses, which are already living under a tight budget, cannot tolerate a continuation of out-of-control electric cost. After all, consumers have no options in the marketplace to get these services elsewhere. These utility monopolies enjoy having no competitors, so we need to hold them accountable,” stated Libla. “Creating and retaining well-paying jobs is my top priority. We need to protect the businesses we already have.”

“It is critical for Noranda to remain competitive, plus all of our other businesses in Missouri,” said Libla. “Noranda is vital to our local economy. The money that goes back into our local schools and businesses is irreplaceable.”

Sen. Doug Libla serves the 25th District in the Missouri State Senate, representing Butler, Carter, Dunklin, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Shannon, and Stoddard Counties. He was elected in November 2012. As a businessman from Southeast Missouri, Sen. Libla is committed to helping businesses in the state remain open, which provide family-sustaining jobs for citizens.

Senator Doug Libla services the citizens of Butler, Carter, Dunklin, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Shannon and Stoddard counties in the Missouri Senate.