NIPSCO

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NORTHWEST INDIANA - At one point in the later part of Tuesday afternoon at around 4 p.m. 14,000 people in Northwest Indiana were without power, both customers of NIPSCO and customers of  Kankakee Valley REMC.

NIPSCO Public Affairs Manager Dana Berkes told Lakeshore Public Radio the issue was at a substation.  She said all repair crews were sent to the scene to get customers restored as quickly as possible.  Repair crews had to switch the effected customers to another circuit.

Alan Mbathi / IPB News

When a coal plant shuts down, the loss of jobs and tax revenue can be devastating for the towns that host them. The state is grappling with how to help workers and local governments in Indiana with that transition.

Ildar Sagdejev / Wikimedia Commons

UPDATE: On Wednesday, the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission ordered state-regulated utilities to offer payment plans of at least six months for their customers. Late fees, disconnection fees and reconnection fees have also been suspended until Oct. 12. 

Last week, Gov. Eric Holcomb said the state has no plans to further extend a ban on utility shutoffs during the COVID-19 crisis. But more than 11 percent of Hoosiers are still unemployed and cases are going up. 

Tom Maloney

NORTHWEST INDIANA - A severe thunderstorm hit Northwest Indiana Monday afternoon that brought high winds, heavy rain and knocked out power to about 21,800 NIPSCO customers.

During the afternoon on Monday Northwest Indiana was under a severe thunderstorm watch that was expected to possibly bring  winds up to 100 miles per hour.

Meteorologist Brian Leatherwood with the Chicago National Weather Service in Romeoville told Lakeshore Public Radio before the storm that everyone should take cover.  

Tony Webster / Flickr

The northern Indiana utility NIPSCO will pay one of the highest fines in state history for natural gas pipeline safety violations. The state said the company failed to timely find or mark some of its pipelines — which could have caused natural gas explosions. 

NIPSCO

WHEATFIELD - Fire crews spent a large part of Thursday afternoon fighting a fire that broke out inside  NIPSCO's RM Schahfer Generating Station in Wheatfield.

Wendy Lussier, NIPSCO Director of Communications, says it started at about 1:30 p.m.

"And as a result of the fire we did evacuate a portion of the facility and smoke has been visible in the vicinity to people who are out in the community," Lussier says.

Rebecca Thiele / IPB News

Many Hoosiers who are unable to pay their energy bills won’t face shutoffs for another 45 days. On Monday, the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission ordered some utilities to continue the moratorium on shutoffs through Aug. 14. 

www.nipsco.com / NIPSCO

NORTHWEST INDIANA- NIPSCO is still responding to the widespread power outages across Northwest Indiana and some may not see power restored until tomorrow (Thursday), according to the utility's website.

The outages are due to a second round of strong storms that came through northern Indiana mid-morning on Wednesday and the sustained high winds still in effect as of Wednesday afternoon after 2 p.m.  

Utilities Want to Recoup Losses During COVID From Customers

May 28, 2020

NORTHWEST INDIANA - NIPSCO and other investor-owned gas and electric utilities want to recoup revenue it lost during the COVID-19 pandemic from its customers.

The "Times" reports the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission is going to review the utilities' request.

Courtesy of NIPSCO

A northwest Indiana utility plans to remove toxic coal ash from five of its ponds at its Michigan City coal plant. NIPSCO plans to excavate the waste and put it in a lined landfill at its other coal plant, R.M. Schahfer Generating Station in Wheatfield. 

The Indiana NAACP says keeping coal plants open longer would negatively affect the health of low-income and minority communities in the state. The group has asked lawmakers to vote down a House bill that could delay coal plant closures. 

Will Vectren Be Mostly Wind And Solar In The Future?

Sep 3, 2019

Since Vectren’s plan to build a large natural gas plant was rejected in April, the utility has been looking for other sources to replace its three retiring coal units. If the utility’s recent energy bids are any indication, we could see more renewables in the mix. 

Northern Indiana utility customers protested Thursday night to oppose NIPSCO’s plans to raise their rates while allowing industrial customers to access lower market prices. The company says the proposed 7 percent rate will be used to transition away from coal and toward cleaner sources.

Former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt didn’t convince the Indiana Chamber of Commerce to change its mind about an energy moratorium in Indiana. The coal lobbyist had hoped to revive legislation that would have placed a temporary hold on large utility projects. 

MAAC Foundation website

Today:   Lake Area United Way is focusing its 2019 effort to help working-poor families find affordable child care and livable-wage jobs.  These households are also known by the term ALICE, and we revisit our conversations with Lisa Daugherty, President and CEO of Lake Area United Way, to review the nonprofit's strategies next year.    We also have another edition of "Green Fleet Radio," supported by South Shore Clean Cities.  And Celina Weatherwax with the MAAC Foundation in Valparaiso joins us to talk about the organization's training efforts for emergency personnel that includes a new p

The Indiana utility NIPSCO wants to move from about 65 percent coal-powered to mostly renewables by 2028. That’s a big shift for NIPSCO, but it’s hard to say if other Indiana utilities will follow suit. 

Phased-in NIPSCO gas rate increase takes effect Oct. 1

Sep 20, 2018

MERRILLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Higher natural gas rates for Northern Indiana Public Service Co. will take effect Oct. 1 and cost the average residential customer about $8 more per month when fully phased in.

NIPSCO said Thursday the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approved the new rates this this week after the company reached an agreement with the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor and industrial customers.

IYI/Youtube

Today:    Tami Silverman, the presuident and CEO of the Indiana Youth Institute, joins us to talk about the new state Legislature-mandated training sessions for all Indiana teachers and educators in grades 5-12 on youth suicide awareness and prevention.  Hoosier youth are more likely to consider or attempt suicide than their peers nationally, according to IYI data.  Indiana also faces significant disparities in youth suicide among the vulnerable groups,. and among the different sizes of school districts in the state. 

South Shore Clean Cities

Today:    We revsit our conversation with state Senator Karen Tallian (D-Ogden Dunes) on her recent trip to Canada for a meeting where trade between the U.S. and Canada was discussed.  Indiana's one of the major Midwest trade states with our neighbors to the North. 

We also have another edition of "Green Fleet Radio," supported by South Shore Clean Cities, with Carl Lisek and the manager for business development at NIPSCO.

rexp2 / Flickr

CHESTERTON, Ind. (AP) — A northern Indiana utility is moving forward on plans to reduce its coal-fired power generating capacity.

The Times reports Thursday was the last scheduled day of operation for coal-fired generators at NIPSCO's Bailly Generating Station near Chesterton.

NIPSCO spokesman Nick Meyer says employees gathered this week "to commemorate the fact that the facility has served more than 50 years, and the important role it played."

Michigan City Schools Launch Solar Power Initiative

Mar 28, 2018
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Michigan City Area Schools

Michigan City Area Schools today celebrated the addition of new solar arrays to its facilities in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Krueger Middle School.

 

The recently installed ground-mount solar arrays feed into the NIPSCO power grid and the school corporation expects the new solar panels, which have been placed  at 7 of its 16 facilities, including the main administration building, to offset utility costs by at least 52 percent per year.  

 

That’s an annual savings of about $704,000 dollars.

JoeyBLS Photography

Today:  on this Reporter's Roundtable, we welcome Joseph Pete, business reporter for the "Times of Northwest Indiana," and his Statehouse colleague Dan Carden.  They talk about the stories they wrote that were in print as well as online.

Temple University School of Law

Today:  we talk with Valparaiso University School of Law professor Jeremy Telman about this Thursday's 2018 Martin Luther King Jr. Lecture  on campus.  This year, the guest speaker is professor Henry Richardson III, from the Beasley School of Law at Temple University. He is a renowned expert on international law, and his insight into how it fits into today's world view will be ompared with Dr. King's own views. 

Indiana State Police / Indiana State Police

GARY- A portion of 80/94 was closed for about five hours Wednesday morning into the afternoon.  That was due to downed power lines.  Indiana State Police Department Public Information Officer Sergeant Ann Wojas says the interstate was closed from about 8:25 Wednesday morning until just after 1:15 p.m.

NIPSCO crews removed the power lines that were laying across the entire interstate and will return later this evening to replace the compromised power pole.  It is not expected that traffic on I-80/94 in either direction will be affected by this replacement.
 

GNIAR / Realtors website

Today:  We talk with Crown Point Realtor Clarence Webb for his view on how northwest Indiana home sales went in 2017 and a look at 2018.  We also talk with Denise Rodriguez with NIPSCO about the utility's payment programs -- including the Low Income Heating Assistance Program -- and how they can help customers pay their winter heating bills and "keep the heat on" on the colest days.

Today:  a conversation with northwest Indiana financial advisor Greg Hammer on the "season for giving," including keeping track of your year-round charitable donations to prepare for income tax filing and how to best organize one's donations to report them.

Denise Rodriguez of NIPSCO explains the features in the Low Income Heating Assistance Program and other payment programs that the utility offers to help customers who may need help in paying their hearing bills this winter.

NPR / NPR

MERRILLVILLE - Northern Indiana utility customers will pay about the same as last year to heat their homes through the winter.   That's according to a recent forecast from the Merrillville-based utility. Nick Meyer, Director of Communications for NIPSCO says the utility releases a forecast of what natural gas will cost for the five colder months, November though March.

Purdue University Northwest - Hammond

Today:  We revisit our conversation with two Gary charter school students who are in the cast of an anti-opioid addiction PSA being shown this month before films at the AMC Theatres in Merrillville.  The theme of their message -- don't share prescription medications with anyone.