Montana Public Service Commission

Power transmission lines against a blue sky
Karim D. Ghantous / Flickr

A state board late Friday announced it will allow Montana’s largest utility to increase rates by $6.5 million-dollars.

A sign reading "NorthWestern Energy" in silver type against a tan woodgrain background.
Nora Saks / Montana Public Radio

Editor's Note 12/10: This story expands upon previous reporting on the same topic from Dec. 09.

Montana's largest utility company says it needs to nearly double its electricity generation to keep up with customer demands for power during winter freezes and summer heatwaves.

NorthWestern Energy logo
NorthWestern Energy


NorthWestern Energy is asking state utility regulators to sign off on the company’s request to increase their customers’ electric bills by $23.8 million for one year. This surcharge is in addition to a $6.5 million rate increase commissioners approved late last month.

NorthWestern Energy logo
NorthWestern Energy


State utility regulators are nearing the end of a massive review of what Northwestern Energy charges its customers and what the company makes in profit. Several regulators this week are arguing over how the public was notified that they’ll likely see an increase in their electric bills.

NorthWestern Energy logo
NorthWestern Energy

The Montana Public Service Commission has approved a $6.5 million rate increase for NorthWestern Energy customers, less than 20 percent of the increase the utility initially sought.

Northern Plains member Ed Gulick speaks to a crowd at renewable energy rally at the Yellowstone County Courthouse October 4.
Kayla Desroches / Yellowstone Public Radio

Montana’s largest utility company is reviewing its electric rates for the first time in 10 years and one provision has people worried that the new rates could hurt clean energy progress in the state.

A panel of federal land state security, public school and elected officials discuss cybersecurity.
Nicky Ouellet / Yellowstone Public Radio

In the wake of cyber attacks on public schools in Louisiana that led the governor there to declare a state of emergency last month, agency heads and elected officials in Montana are talking about how to keep student and staff information safe here.

As fire season starts to heat up in Montana, the threat of electrical power lines igniting dry forests is raising concerns. Power lines started the deadliest and most expensive fire in California history last November, the Camp Fire, which destroyed the town of Paradise and killed 85 people.

The threat of vegetation falling on Montana power lines has increased in recent years due to the rising number of beetle-killed trees.