Report says switching city water plant to IPL is uneconomical

A review of switching the electrical supplier for Independence's Courtney Bend water treatment plant to the city-owned Independence Power and Light shows it would be uneconomical.

The city's water treatment plant is currently served by Kansas City Power and Light because it is located in the investor-owned utility's service area.

The idea to explore switching utilities was undertaken at the request of the City Council who will receive a presentation at their Jan. 22 study session.

Analysis by the IPL staff spelled out the impacts of undertaking the switch.

The staff's estimates to switch utilities providers could cost up to $29.5 million - $17.2 million to KCPL to take over the service and another $12.2 million for new IPL transmission line upgrades to deliver power to Courtney Bend.

The switch would also cost potentially $345,000 more annually in utility costs because current IPL rates are higher than what is currently paid to KCPL.

The Courtney Bend treatment plant is a major electrical user and their electrical demand would involve adding additional load capacity on the IPL electrical system.

Lastly the change might require regulatory approval by the Missouri Public Service Commission or others.