Georgia Public Service Commission Approves Second Multi-Year STRIDE Program to Improve Capacity and Pressure in Metropolitan Atlanta
ATLANTA - Dec. 12, 2013 - Atlanta Gas Light Company announced Thursday that it has received regulatory approval to install new pipelines and other facilities to improve capacity and pressure in the high-growth counties of Coweta, Fayette, Gwinnett, Hall, Forsyth and Dawson. The Georgia Public Service Commission voted unanimously Thursday to accept a staff-negotiated settlement approving the second phase of the company's STRIDE program (Strategic Infrastructure Development and Enhancement).
"Over the next four years, we will invest approximately $215 million to improve our core transmission and distribution facilities in several metro-Atlanta counties to minimize the risk of our customers experiencing service disruption during periods of extreme cold weather," said Bryan Batson, president of Atlanta Gas Light.
Started in 2009 as part of a 10-year system reinforcement program, the first phase of STRIDE expended $254 million to improve capacity and pressure in the heart of Atlanta and Riverdale and in Cherokee, Cobb, North Fulton, and Forsyth counties. A new supply point also was added by the company by tapping into an interstate gas line in Newnan.
The PSC on Thursday also approved a $46 million expansion of Atlanta Gas Light's Customer Growth program to expand the natural gas system into communities throughout the state that are currently unserved or underserved. System extensions in the first phase of the program were $45 million and included an industrial area in Bryan County in the Savannah area, residential areas of Lake Sinclair, Grovetown in Columbia County, and the mountainous communities of Cleveland and Helen in White County, and Ellijay and Blue Ridge in Gilmer and Fannin counties. Atlanta Gas Light extended the three-mile, $1 million high pressure line into the Bryan County Commerce Centre in 2010, and last month Caesarstone Sdot Yam, an engineered quartz surface products company that uses natural gas in its manufacturing process, announced plans to invest $70 million to $100 million in a new facility located in the industrial park. Thursday's approval includes the construction of a 9.8-mile high-pressure line to serve the Tradeport East Industrial Park near Midway, Ga. in Liberty County - the first of several Customer Growth projects to follow over the next several years.
The STRIDE program extension approved Thursday will increase customer bills by $0.48 beginning in January of 2015, an additional $0.48 in January of 2016, and $0.47 in January of 2017. Since 1998, changes in Atlanta Gas Light's service rates, including today's action, have remained at or below the rate of inflation.
About Atlanta Gas Light
Atlanta Gas Light, a wholly owned subsidiary of AGL Resources (NYSE: GAS), provides natural gas delivery service to more than 1.5 million customers in Georgia. In operation since 1856, the company is one of the oldest corporations in the state. For more information, visit www.atlantagaslight.com.
About AGL Resources
AGL Resources (NYSE: GAS) is an Atlanta-based energy services holding company with operations in natural gas distribution, retail operations, wholesale services, midstream operations and cargo shipping. AGL Resources serves approximately 4.5 million utility customers through its regulated distribution subsidiaries in seven states. The company also serves approximately 630,000 retail energy customers and approximately 1.2 million customer service contracts through its SouthStar Energy Services joint venture and Pivotal Home Solutions, which market natural gas and related home services. Other non-utility businesses include asset management for natural gas wholesale customers through Sequent Energy Management, ownership and operation of natural gas storage facilities, and ownership of Tropical Shipping, one of the largest containerized cargo carriers serving the Bahamas and Caribbean region. AGL Resources is a member of the S&P 500 Index.www.aglresources.com.
Kristie Swink Benson