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Electric Bill Dispute Has Enormous Implications For Wal-Mart

Posted: Mar 8, 2014 3:52 AM by The Associated Press
Updated: Mar 8, 2014 8:59 AM

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JEFFERSON CITY (AP) - Wal-Mart is seeking to intervene in a dispute about electric rates between Ameren Missouri and its largest electric customer.

Noranda Aluminum Holding Corp. has sought about a 25 percent reduction in the rate Ameren charges at its aluminum smelter in the southeastern Missouri town of New Madrid.

Wal-Mart filed a motion Friday with the Missouri Public Service Commission asking to intervene in the case.

In its filing, Wal-Mart says a lower rate for Noranda could significantly affect its own electric bills. Wal-Mart operates 73 stores in Missouri that consume a combined 190 million kilowatts per hour in electricity.

Noranda says Ameren is overearning and that lowering its rate would only increase other customers' bills by 1.8 percent or less. Ameren disagrees and says it will fight the rate reduction.

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