[4/20/17] PUD Could Give Alcoa More Time To Decide On Restarting Wenatchee Works Smelter

Posted in Feature, Public Utility


Chelan County PUD commissioners are considering a proposal that would give Alcoa more time to decide whether or not to restart the idled Wenatchee Works smelter. KOZI’s Ken Johannessen has details:

042017 KEN – PUD Alcoa 1:39 Q:”meeting May frist”

Under the current agreement, Alcoa would pay the PUD 67-million dollars if the Malaga smelter isn’t reopened by June. However, Alcoa says paying the full sum might remove any chance the smelter could restart. The proposed amendment under consideration would allow for a one-year deferral of that agreeement, with Alcoa paying the PUD 7-point-three million dollars on June 19th. PUD commissioner Steve McKenna tells KOZI that deferring the Power Sales Agreement covers the PUD’s costs while giving the aluminum giant a chance to assess the feasibility of a restart:


The 7-point-three million dollars includes 4-point-3 million that covers a one-year share of the 67-million dollars that would be due in June. The rest is the PUD’s estimate of the cost for changing the payment terms of the long-term power contract.

If the smelter remains idle when June 2018 comes around, Alcoa would owe the PUD the 62-million dollars remaining on the contract.

The PUD commission has not voted on the proposal yet. A community meeting to get input and continue discussion on the proposal has been set for April 25, although a location for that meeting hasn’t been announced. The PUD Commission is expected to take action on the proposal at their May 1st meeting.