MI regulators ask utility why money not refunded

LANSING, MI – State regulators are asking Consumers Energy Co. to show why it hasn't returned unspent funds to its Michigan customers.

The Michigan Public Service Commission on Tuesday directed the Jackson-based utility to file a response by Oct. 30 saying why it hasn't paid the refunds required under a 2005 order.

Consumers Energy spokesman Dan Bishop says the utility is studying the latest order.

The refunds include $6.5 million the company didn't spend for tree trimming and $7.6 million it didn't spend for operations and maintenance at some of its plants. The utility collected money from customers for those expenses in 2007.

The commission could charge the company interest and fines on the unpaid refunds.