News Releases

Sierra Pacific Power Files to Stabilize Electricity Rates at Current Levels

Jan 14, 2003

Sierra Pacific Resources
Contact: Faye I. Andersen
Phone: (775) 834-4822

For Immediate Release

Reno, Nev -- Sierra Pacific Power Company today made its mandatory annual deferred energy filing with the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN), requesting that customer rates for the next year remain at current levels. The filing was made in conjunction with a filing for recovery of conservation costs known as General Order 43.

Combined, the two filings represent a change of less than one- tenth of one percent, which would mean an increase of just 4-6 cents per month, or a maximum of 72 cents a year, for a typical residential customer. If approved by the PUCN, single family residential customers using 715 kilowatt hours of electricity per month would see their bills increase from $75.09 to $75.15.

"The decline in energy prices during 2002, coupled with a conservative analysis of the immediate future, has resulted in our current request to stabilize customer rates at current levels," Walter M. Higgins, chairman, president and CEO of Sierra Pacific Resources (NYSE: SRP).

Higgins further noted that there have been significant changes in the energy marketplace since the crisis that gripped the Western United States in 2000-2001."Although the energy crisis has abated and we are hopeful that pricing trends will continue to move downward, we would be remiss in not recognizing the unpredictability of the power marketplace.

"We still have concerns about the future of Nevada's energy supplies and the potential ramifications if our state does not become more energy self-sufficient. In order to meet the extraordinary challenge of securing reliable and economic sources of power to satisfy the state's growing needs, Sierra Pacific Power and its parent company, Sierra Pacific Resources, are eager to work with state leaders to seek ways to reduce dependence on volatile energy markets," he said.

Sierra Pacific is required by Nevada law to make deferred energy filings annually. Under Nevada law, the company makes no profit on fuel and energy costs. During the preceding year, increases and decreases in fuel and purchased power costs are held in a balancing account and these changes are passed on dollar-for- dollar to customers. Also, the going forward rate was requested to remain the same, expecting stable costs in the year ahead.

The second filing made by Sierra Pacific is for recovery of costs invested in conservation, which were approved by the PUCN earlier this year. These investments pay for low- income weatherization programs, energy education, information and conservation programs. To pay for these costs, this second filing requests an increase in rates of 7 cents per month for the typical single family residential customer. The increase is offset by a decrease in the deferred energy filing, which results in the net 4-6 cent monthly increase for residential customers.

Both filings are subject to review and approval by the PUCN. A decision by the PUCN could go into effect on or before mid-June, 2003.

Headquartered in Nevada, Sierra Pacific Resources is a holding company whose principal subsidiaries are Sierra Pacific Power Company, the electric utility for most of northern Nevada and the Lake Tahoe area of California; and Nevada Power Company, the electric utility for most of southern Nevada. Sierra Pacific Power Company also distributes natural gas in the Reno- Sparks area of northern Nevada. Other subsidiaries include the Tuscarora Gas Pipeline Company, which owns a 50 percent interest in an interstate natural gas transmission partnership, several unregulated energy services companies and Sierra Pacific Communications, a telecommunications network development company.

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