Kansas Corporation Commission

Keith Ewing / flickr Creative Commons

An annual program meant to protect low-income Kansans during the coldest months of the year is set to go into effect this week.

Kansas’ Cold Weather Rule, established by the Kansas Corporation Commission in 1983, runs from Nov. 1 through March 31. It helps to ensure that electric, gas and water service won’t be disconnected from a person’s home during the winter.


Kansas regulators are threatening to halt the $12.2 billion sale of Topeka-based Westar Energy to Great Plains Energy if they don't get details on cost savings and other information.

Kansas Corporation Commission took no action at a meeting Tuesday. But an order warned that if merger standards aren't met, possible action could include a request for dismissal of the merger application, The Topeka Capital-Journal reported.

Faces of Fracking, flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas Corporation Commission has approved an order that puts additional limits on the amount of saltwater that oil and gas producers may inject into wells in Harper and Sumner counties and parts of Kingman, Sedgwick and Barber counties. The change, which is related to earthquake activity, also expands the area where underground disposal is restricted.


The Kansas Gas Service is asking the Kansas Corporation Commission for a $28 million increase in its net base rate. The utility’s last rate increase was approved in 2012.

If the request is approved, Kansas Gas Service says the average residential customer's bill would increase by 7.2 percent. Dawn Ewing with the Kansas Gas Service says that’s about $4.34 per month for residential customers.

“This proposal allows us to continue to invest in our natural gas system and provide the safe and reliable service that our customers depend on, ” he says.

Cold Weather Rule For Utilities To End Thursday

Mar 28, 2016
Felipe Skroski, Creative Commons

A program that helps people who are struggling to pay their winter utility bills is ending this week.

The Kansas Cold Weather Rule is in effect throughout the state between November 1 and March 31. The program protects residential customers who can’t fully pay their gas and electric bills from service cut-offs.

Recent Kansas Corporation Commission decisions on utility investments could save customers millions of dollars.

The KCC recently filed a complaint with federal authorities arguing Westar Energy is charging too much return on equity for its transmission projects.

Westar currently charges 11.3 percent. The KCC is arguing it should be 9.37 percent. The reduction could drop rates $15.8 million dollars annually.

The Kansas Corporation Commission has approved a plan that would allow Westar Energy to receive about $3.5 million dollars in revenue for making emissions improvements at the La Cygne power plant in eastern Kansas.

Westar also agreed not to ask for a rate increase until March.

About two-thirds of the company's customers are expected to see an increase of about 16 cents on their bills, but they will not pay more until October of 2015.

Governor Sam Brownback is nominating a former Kansas Senate majority leader for a seat on the Kansas Corporation Commission.

Brownback has chosen Republican Senator Jay Emler, from Lindsborg, to take the position being vacated by KCC Chairman Mark Sievers.

Brownback says Emler will be a good fit for the commission, which regulates industries including utilities and oil drilling.

The Kansas Corporation Commission is now allowing consumers, attorneys and the utilities it regulates to file documents electronically.

The agency made the new e-Filing Express system available through its website on Monday.

Commission executive director Kim Christiansen says the new system will be more convenient for parties in regulatory cases and reduce costs.

The commission receives about 8,500 paper documents a year.

The chairman of the Kansas Corporation Commission has announced he will resign. Mark Sievers has chaired the regulatory board since 2011.

The KCC regulates utilities including electricity, natural gas and telecommunications.

The organization has recently been involved in some controversies. A month ago, a Shawnee County judge fined the agency for violating the state's open meetings act by using a system in which some proposals were approved behind closed doors.