News Releases

PUCN Grants Sierra Pacific Recovery of Natural Gas Costs

Oct 26, 2004

The Public Utilities Commission of Nevada (PUCN) today granted Sierra Pacific Power Company's request to adjust its natural gas prices and increase residential customer rates by 4.9 percent.

The increase reflects the costs the company paid to purchase natural gas for its customers and is part of an annual mandatory Purchased Gas Adjustment (PGA) filing that reflects only the price of natural gas the company buys on behalf of its customers. It does not include profit or operating costs for its customers. Nevada regulations require utilities to purchase gas on behalf of their customers, keep track of the expenses, and then seek reimbursement over time, based on actual costs. The price adjustment becomes effective November 1, 2004.

"The cost of natural gas and all forms of energy continue to rise and this increase reimburses the company for costs we've already spent for our customers, as well as adjusts the rates for the coming year,"said Mary Simmons, vice president of Rates and Regulation for Sierra Pacific Power Company.

Based on usage of 57 therms of natural gas per month, the average residential customer's bill will increase 4.9 percent from $57.10 to $59.89, or $2.79, as a result of the rate adjustment.

The company's last two PGA filings resulted in a combined total of 6 percent in rate decreases during 2003. The last decrease of $4 million, or 3 percent, took effect November 1, 2003. Customers previously had received an additional $4 million, or 3 percent decrease in rates on January 1, 2003.

Today's increase covers the cost of natural gas from April 2003 through March 2004. The filing also includes the price of natural gas for the next year, based on anticipated future wholesale prices.

Sierra Pacific Power Company serves approximately 125,000 natural gas customers in the Reno-Sparks metropolitan area. Sierra Pacific Power Company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sierra Pacific Resources (NYSE:SRP).

# # #