Kansas Regulators Stop Merger of Two Utilities

Decision time this week for two big utilities in Kansas. Westar Energy and Great Plains Energy have until May 4 to decide their next step after the Kansas Corporation Commission rejected a $12.2 billion agreement between the two firms.

Last year, Great Plains asked the KCC to approve its move to acquire Westar Energy. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed off on the deal along with business leaders in and around Topeka.

The two firms had 15 days to Petition for Reconsideration, according to a report in the Topeka Capital Journal.

Great Plains Energy Inc. is the holding company of Kansas City Power and Light Company and the KCPL Greater Missouri Operations Company. The utilities serve more than 851,200 customers in 47 counties in Missouri and Kansas.

Westar is the largest electricity provider in Kansas. The Topeka-headquartered-company has about 2,400 employees with nearly 700,000  customers and 35,000 miles of transmission and distribution lines.