Miss. high court denies Miss. Power petition

By Jeff Amy/The Associated Press

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The state Supreme Court says Mississippi Power Co. can’t raise its rates while appealing the denial of the price increase by the Public Service Commission.

The court ruled 8-0 against Mississippi Power Tuesday. Chief Justice Bill Waller Jr. did not participate.

Mississippi Power is seeking a total rate increase of more than $55 million. It would cost the average residential customer about $20 a month more.

The higher rates would repay money that the unit of Atlanta-based Southern Co. has borrowed to build a $2.8 billion coal-fired power plant in Kemper County.

The PSC voted 3-0 to deny the rate increase, saying it didn’t want customers’ bills to rise while the Sierra Club is still challenging Mississippi Power’s authority to build power plant. Mississippi Power’s main appeal is still pending.