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SOUND OFF: KCC vs Midwest Energy Self Regulation

Why should you vote for Midwest Energy to become self regulated?  The energy company held a meeting in Hays Thursday night to explain why you should vote for self regulation.

As a cooperative, customers have the opportunity to give their opinions by voting. Westar Energy is not a coop and customers do not have that option.

A spokesman for the Kansas Corporation Commission told Hays Post “Even if members vote to return most decision making authority from the KCC, the members would still have an opportunity to appeal rate changes with the KCC.  However, since there is an open docket before the commission on the issue, they are not able to say more.

Ballots are in the mail and need to be returned next month.  What do you think of think of the issue?  Tell us in the comments section below.

KSKOLLECTIONS
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  • OomuchoO

    Midwest needs a competitor here in town. Coming from a different town to here you see how criminal a company becomes when they don’t have to be nice to keep your business. They deserve less power over themselves. They rob college students of SUPER high deposits, and charge you a ‘new’ connection fee for being an existing customer. They penalize people for being a customer! Even if you always pay your bill in full, if say your paycheck comes on the 15th and your bill was due on the 12, they make you pay a SUPER high deposit if you move! In my opinion people need a choice not a monopoly!

  • JUSTVOTENO

    VOTE NO TO SELF REGULATE or Midwest will raise rates WHENEVER they want! This coming from two people who have worked for MWE for years…

  • http://www.mwenergy.com Midwest Energy, Inc.

    Hi OomuchoO,
    Having moved to 10 different cities in my adult life, I know how inconvenient utility deposits can be. But they’re necessary to protect the interests of all of our cooperative members. I’d like to clarify a couple of points. First, Midwest Energy’s policy on deposits adheres to KCC billing standards, and is to collect two months of the average utility bill from the addresses’ previous 12 months of usage. We don’t charge different levels of deposits for college students or any other resident – it’s based on past usage at your new address. If a home isn’t energy efficient or the previous occupant kept the heat cranked up in the winter, the home will have a high usage and require a larger deposit. Residential deposits can be made in four installments – one lump sum isn’t required. Further, we don’t require any deposit at all from new customers who bring a letter of good standing from their previous utility. Second, we don’t charge connection fees for existing customers who move; even if you change addresses five times in a year, as long as your account is current, there is no connection charge at your new address. Only accounts where service is disconnected for non-payment and then re-connected are assessed a connection fee.
    Midwest Energy works hard to keep our rates affordable – an average of 12% lower than the average Kansas cooperative. With this in mind, if you feel a deposit was collected in error, please call us at 800-222-3121. Thanks,
    - Mike Morley, Corporate Communications Mgr.

    • OomuchoO

      The problem I really had Dan was when I called to move utilities I was told it was connection fee, then a deposit, then a connecion fee again. Then I was threatens with a vey rude tone that she could audit me any time she wanted and require more of deposit. I find MWE business ethics despicable. I find that your company needs regulation because you guys are money hungry. You do not have the best interest of the Hays population in mind you have, like any other monopoly, bonuses and

      • OomuchoO

        I am goin to stop myself because it makes me sick

        • passin threw

          sounds like your credit history is as solid as dan’s ethics

          • OomuchoO

            My credit score is just fine, I have never had to pay a deposit any where else, all my bills are paid the only debt I have is a car payment. The deposit or connection fee is bogus. That is the point I was trying to get at. I am not angry, it is just disgusting. You are just making a sad attempt to belittle my opinion.

          • dan

            Yeah, bc what I post is SO unethical. Is that the best you can do?

  • dan

    So why punish a new customer based on the irresponsibility of others?

  • http://www.mwenergy.com Midwest Energy, Inc.

    Hi Dan,
    I don’t fully understand the question. The deposit policy is equally applicable to all customers. Customers who provide a letter of good standing from a previous utility have their deposit waived, while others pay a deposit equal to two months of service from the addresses’ previous 12 months of usage. The only variable in deposits is consumption – how much energy a property uses. An addresses’ prior consumption is the most equitable standard to establish deposits, used by many utilities nationwide, and follows the KCC’s billing standards.
    It’s important to note, deposits are fully returned (with interest at a rate set by the KCC) to residential customers after 10 on-time payments in a 12-month period. The deposit is returned in form of a credit against current charges, unless the customer requests a check, which is then mailed to them. If you believe you’re owed a deposit refund and have not received it, please call us at 800-222-3121. Thanks,
    - Mike Morley, Corporate Communications Mgr.

    • dan

      Most college students have no utility history.

      • http://www.mwenergy.com Midwest Energy, Inc.

        Hi Dan,
        College students and others who have a relative who is a Midwest Energy customer in good standing may complete a “Payment Guarantee Agreement” (PGA), where the established customer agrees to cover the deposit for the new account (much like a loan co-signer). This PGA acts as a letter of good standing on behalf of the student; no cash is required up front this way, and provided the student remains current on the new account, no charges are ever assessed to the established account. Midwest Energy executes about 200 PGAs each year, saving new customers thousands in deposits.
        - Mike Morley, Corporate Communications Mgr.

        • dan

          You’re dancing, Mike.

          • passin threw

            dan can you name a utility company that doesn’t have a deposit or connection fee?

          • dan

            Never paid a deposit at Kansas Gas Service. Next question.

        • Ma Bell all over again!

          I noticed not a word was said about the RUDE office help this company has. The city’s citizens has had to endure the mistreatment of this company for years. I don’t trust a word MWE says. They have faults and misleading business practices.

  • blind r

    Why do people always find people “rude” when they disagree with a policy. I’m betting it goes both ways on this one just by the tone of his posts.

    Misleading business practices? In my dealings everything has been crystal clear. Mistreatment? Come on . . . . . .

    • Ma Bell all over again!

      Yep, like your title says, blind, you come on. I am glad things have been good for you, really I am. I am betting most people know what I am talking about.

  • hmmm 2

    Hey blind r..you obviously work for MWE..nasty people..ridiculous rates and poor service. bring on the competition.!!

  • Uncle Thomas

    MWE will do what ever they want… like a bank, a health insurance company, a hospital, etc. They have accountants and attorneys which can justify anything. They can play with numbers to justify anything…how about if they share with us cooperative members the salaries the top 10% of the managers make…base + perks.

  • http://hayspost.com Good Service

    I own property in Ellis County that has MWE service, I also own property in Trego County that has Western Electric service and I own property in Nebraska that is covered my a differant Cooperative…..I have not ever had any problems with any of them and there rates seem about the same throught the three I have to deal with.

  • Blind r

    First of all to the cynics – I do not work at MWE.

    Secondly, the whiners have an axe to grind for whatever reason. I have lived in a lot of areas and the local whiners do not know about paying twice the rates, with horrible reliability like other areas. For those with no/horrible payment history: don’t blame anyone except yourself.

    I’m getting tired of the “whoa is me” society.

  • Blind r

    And Uncle Tom: your arrogance and ignorance wants to make me puke. How about giving me 10% of your salary? I hear the convenience store is paying pretty well these days.