Retail Unbundling - Kansas
Status: The state has no unbundled services for residential customers but is considering action.
Overview: The Kansas Corporation Commission began a general investigation into unbundling the state's natural gas industry in 1999. On February 10, 1999, the commission filed a notice of inquiry (Docket 99-GIMG-538-GIG) to solicit input from local distribution companies (LDCs) and other interested parties as to whether retail unbundling is appropriate and in the public interest. In October 1999, the commission decided not to order statewide unbundling at this time, but invited Midwest Energy to file a request for a pilot choice program for its residential customers. The commission also issued an order to consider an index pricing system for natural gas and directed the staff to propose a performance-based ratemaking (PBR) mechanism. In December 2000, the commission recommended that a pilot program be established to ascertain whether the proposed PBR mechanism is feasible.
EIA State Data: In 2002, Kansas had 843,395 residential and 87,362 commercial customers. They consumed 71 and 39 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of natural gas, respectively. The average prices paid for natural gas purchased from local distribution companies by residential and commercial customers were $7.24 and $6.51 per thousand cubic feet, respectively. Only one of the many LDCs in Kansas had more than 13 percent of the total residential or commercial market in 2002. That utility, Kansas Gas Service, supplied 69 percent of the state's residential customers and 67 percent of the commercial customers.