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Utilities

Information for and about utilities; includes the Conservation Improvement Program, rate cases, and facility permitting.

Energy Facility Permitting

The Minnesota Department of Commerce, Energy Facility Permitting (EFP) unit conducts the environmental review required for proposed energy facilities in Minnesota and serves as technical staff to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) in its permitting of energy facilities.  These facilities include power plants, transmission lines, wind farms, and pipelines.

The type of environmental review varies with facility type and size, e.g., the review for a large transmission line would be an environmental impact statement and include a contested case hearing.

The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has permitting authority for most energy facilities in Minnesota. It relies on EFP staff to inform its permitting decisions through environmental review, administer the review and analysis of siting and routing applications, make recommendations to the PUC for decisions, and assist with permit compliance.

Commerce Department EFP staff are available to assist citizens, local governments, and agencies with questions about energy facility projects.

To search for, track, and comment on an energy facility project proposed for your community, see this section of our website.

Utility Deposit Interest Rates

Minnesota law (Minn. Stat. 325E.02 (b) requires that, privately or publicly owned water, gas, telephone, cable television, electric light, heat, or power companies shall pay a specific interest rate on customer deposits.

By December 15 of each year, the Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Commerce is required to announce the interest rate for the next year.

The rate for 2017 is 0.8%

View the language of the statute

The rates are calculated using these steps:

The last full week in November 2016 was November 14-18.

The yields on one-year United States Treasury securities adjusted for constant maturity for this week are:

  • Monday, November 14: 0.77%
  • Tuesday, November 15: 0.78%
  • Wednesday, November 16: 0.76%
  • Thursday, November 17: 0.77%
  • Friday, November 18: 0.77%

These yield rates come from the U.S Department of the Treasury's Interest Rate Statistics, specifically the one-year Daily Treasury Yield Curve Rates from the Treasury's web site.

The average of these five yields is 0.770%. The required interest rate, rounded to the nearest tenth of a percent, is 0.8%

Rate History 

2016 = 0.5%

2015 = 0.1%

2014 = 0.1%

2013 = 0.2%

2012 = 0.1%

2011 = 0.3%

2010 = 0.3%

2009 = 1.0%

2008= 3.3%

2007= 5.0%

2006= 4.4%

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