News

CenterPoint boosts CEO pay to $37.8 million, blowing past other utilities

April 19, 2022 Energy and Policy Institute Karlee Weinmann CenterPoint Energy paid its CEO a total of $37.8 million last year, far exceeding executive pay at peer companies while it sought massive rate hikes for customers already struggling to keep up with skyrocketing utility bills. A review of executive compensation at large U.S. utilities places David Lesar’s…

State Lawmakers Weigh Providing Relief To Minnesotans Grappling With High Energy Bills, Surcharges From Feb. 2021 Polar Vortex

March 29, 2022 WCCO Caroline Cummings ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – Minnesota lawmakers are mulling proposals aimed at providing relief to utility customers who are paying for surge charges incurred during a cold snap last February when a winter storm in Texas disrupted natural gas supplies. A proposal that passed out of a Senate committee Wednesday would create a…

Sending Out Resumes? MN Officials Suggest Weatherization Jobs

March 17, 2022 Public News Service Mike Moen Wind and solar often get attention for job growth in clean energy, and in Minnesota, those who specialize in home weatherization say demand for this type of work shouldn’t be overlooked. The new federal infrastructure law includes $3.5 billion for weatherization programs, which help low-income households with projects such…

Report takes aim at CenterPoint’s gains from Texas merger

March 1, 2022 MPR News Kirsti Marohn An advocacy group is raising questions about CenterPoint Energy’s financial interest in a Texas-based energy company that it says made billions of dollars from natural gas price spikes following a February 2021 winter storm. The Citizens Utility Board of Minnesota, which advocates for utility customers, released the report…

“I’m struggling”: Soaring heating bills stress Minnesotans

February 21, 2022 Minnesota Reformer Rilyn Eischens Bebe Brandt turned off the heat, piled on blankets and limited stove use to one day a week this winter in hopes of containing her ballooning heating bill. Still, it wasn’t enough. Brandt, a single mom of two in Minneapolis, said her past-due balance swelled to $400. Brandt’s…

2021 Winter Storm Uri Repercussions Still Felt – in Minnesota

February 14, 2022 Public News Service Roz Brown The grid failure in Texas this time last year went far beyond the state’s border, and consumer advocates say it means the country needs to shore up its energy infrastructure. Brian Edstrom, senior regulatory advocate for the nonprofit Citizens Utility Board in Minnesota, said the infrastructure bill recently signed into law…

State regulators approve Xcel plan that shifts from coal to nuclear energy, renewables

February 8, 2022 Star Tribune Mike Hughlett Minnesota utility regulators on Tuesday unanimously approved Xcel Energy’s long-term plans for power generation, which are aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions while maintaining reliable and affordable electricity. The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) gave the go-ahead for Minneapolis-based Xcel to close its coal plants by 2030, extend the…