Boards approve 2023 budgets

At their December meetings, the boards of directors approved the 2023 operating and capital budgets for Basin Electric and subsidiaries.

Darla Jensen, Basin Electric manager of financial reporting and planning, said the budgets were developed with some key assumptions in mind: a 1 mill rate decrease starting in January, load that represents energy growth of 11.5% as compared to 2022, three major maintenance outages at coal-based generation facilities planned for the year, and maintaining financial measures that will continue to support the cooperative’s “A” credit rating.

Basin Electric’s 2023 operating budget includes total cost of electric service of $2.3 billion. Of that, approximately 40% represents purchase power and wheeling, 20% is the cost of fuel, 23% can be attributed to fixed expenses such as depreciation and interest, and 10% is operations. Basin Electric's average member rate for the 2023 budget is 59.18 mills.

“The cash flow for capital projects in 2023 amounts to $545 million. About $350 million of that can be attributed to new generation, namely Pioneer Generation Station Phase IV,” Jensen said. “We are also looking to build additional transmission. Approximately $60 million of that is anticipated in 2023.”

Dakota Gasification Company

Kimberly Miller, Basin Electric senior business analyst, said the 2023 operating budget for Dakota Gas includes operating revenue of $679 million. “About half of that comes from the fertilizer products: ureaanhydrous ammoniaammonium sulfate (Dak Sul 45), and diesel exhaust fluid.  Natural gas sales makes up 30% of the total revenues budgeted in 2023,” Miller said.

The budget also includes operating expenses of $526 million, with 60% of those expenses going to coal, labor, electricity, and natural gas purchases. “Dakota Gas’ capital budget includes expenditures of $62 million with a majority of those cash flows going to the Great Plains CO2 sequestration project,” Miller said.

Dakota Gas’ budgeted net income after tax is $97 million.

The consolidated after-tax income for Basin Electric and its subsidiaries is estimated to be nearly $200 million.

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