The Mississippi Public Services Commission has announced a $300 million settlement with Entergy Mississippi—the largest settlement in the MPSC’s history—ending the state’s part in multistate Federal Energy Regulatory Commission proceedings involving Grand Gulf plant customer rate impacts.
Located in Port Gibson, Miss., Grand Gulf houses a 1,433-MWe boiling water reactor that began commercial operation in 1985. Entergy Corporation owns 90 percent of the facility under its System Energy Resources subsidiary.
According to the June 23 announcement, the MPSC began the litigation before FERC in 2017 over “certain accounting and financing aspects of the Grand Gulf Nuclear Power Station that produced today’s settlement. . . . This global settlement for the state of Mississippi will deliver expeditious benefits to Entergy Mississippi’s customers through refunds and prospective rate reductions, plus decrease regulatory uncertainty at [Grand Gulf].”
Specifics: Results of the settlement with Entergy Mississippi include:
- $200 million to offset high natural gas prices caused by global spikes in energy markets. (Without the infusion of $200 million, the utility’s customers would have seen an increase of greater than $15a month beginning in January 2023, the MPSC said.)
- $35 million for a one-time bill credit, or check, of approximately $80 for each customer.
- $65 million to be issued through the coming years in the form of lower bills.
What they’re saying: “I thank my colleagues and the commission’s staff for the hard work that resulted in this historic settlement,” said MPSC commissioner Brandon Presley. “To be able to send cash back to Mississippians at a time when they are being hit with high gasoline prices at the pump and inflation at every turn is one of my proudest achievements as a public service commissioner. In a global energy crisis, we have taken the lead to brunt these effects, as much as possible, and provide long-term and short-term financial benefits to our people. We will continue to hunt in every nook and cranny for ways to save Mississippians money and hold utility companies accountable.”
In its own announcement on the settlement, Entergy noted that while it maintains its position on the issues in dispute at FERC, the ongoing cost of the proceedings and the uncertainty it created for customers, employees, and stockholders led the company to seek a resolution. “While no settlement is perfect for all parties involved, we applaud the Mississippi commissioners for taking this action,” Haley Fisackerly, Entergy Mississippi president and chief executive officer, said. “They recognized the need to represent their constituents’ interests while at the same time securing the long-term future of a vital resource to Mississippi consumers and Mississippi’s economy.”
The Entergy announcement added that the company hopes the states involved in the other FERC proceedings will follow Mississippi’s lead and seek settlement of the remaining claims.