Judges: Utilities allowed to pass along extra storm costs

Two administrative law judges say Minnesota natural gas utilities should be allowed to pass on an extra $660 million in costs related to storm damage to their customers. The state Department of Commerce and Attorney General’s Office allege the utilities made critical mistakes in their gas procurement procedures during the February 2021 storm and because of the mismanagement, customers should not pay for the extra costs.

The judges rejected the state agencies’ contentions.

The judges’ decisions are not binding, but they can influence the state Public Utilities Commission which has the final say.

The commission is expected to decide the matter this summer.