- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 13, 2016

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Big Rivers Electric Corp. could potentially provide wholesale electric power to as many as nine Kentucky cities under a contract approved by the state’s Public Service Commission.

The PSC said in its order Monday that the contract will help Big Rivers utilize excess generating capacity.

Big Rivers has entered into a power sale agreement with Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency, which represents nine Kentucky cities: Barbourville, Bardwell, Benham, Corbin, Falmouth, Frankfort, Madisonville, Paris and Providence.

In 2013 and 2014, aluminum smelters in Hawesville and Sebree stopped purchasing power from Big Rivers. The smelters used to account for about two-thirds of Big Rivers’ load and revenue.

The loss of the smelter load and revenue left Big Rivers with excess generating capacity and necessitated rate increases to allow the utility to maintain financial stability.

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