Democratic attorney general candidate Paul Suskie announced a plan to fight the electricity rate hikes imposed by Entergy on Arkansas customers who will foot the bill for higher energy production costs in Louisiana. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently approved Entergy’s request to raise the utility rates, which will cause Arkansas customers to pay an estimated $328 million more a year starting in 2007.

Suskie says his plan consists of:

•  Filing of briefs on behalf of Arkansas ratepayers in the current FERC appeal in the DC Circuit Court.
•  Asking FERC to allow the Arkansas Attorney General to intervene on behalf of Arkansas ratepayers in dockets that may affect the rates of Arkansans.
• Ask the Louisiana PSC to take old, inefficient, high cost power plants off line and/ or reduce reliance on these plants rather than seeking to shift their excessive production costs to Arkansas ratepayers.  If necessary, intervene in Louisiana PSC cases that concern resource planning decisions that might result in a shift of excessive Louisiana production costs to Arkansas ratepayers.
• Continue to offer the active support of the Attorney General’s Office to the Arkansas PSC in fighting the FERC ruling currently on appeal. 
• Work with Entergy Arkansas to find ways either to speed up its exit from the System Agreement or to modify the agreement to assure fair treatment for Entergy Arkansas ratepayers.