Our industry stands at the threshold of significant change. Competitive forces and significant technological advances beckon the nation's electric utilities to step forward. The electric industry has the opportunity to create a future that provides the benefits of competition to all customer groups. If we don't restructure, someone else will do it for us. And that could put us at a distinct disadvantage.
At Wisconsin Electric, we've spent considerable time evaluating and discussing various industry restructuring models. In the future we envision, the benefits of competition become available to all customers simultaneously, not just certain sectors at certain times. The primary benefits include:
s A competitive market
s Customer choice in supply and value-added service
s Increased customer satisfaction
s Economic efficiency
s Enhanced environmental achievements
s Technological development
s Protection of utility and customer interests.
We envision splitting today's vertically integrated utilities into natural monopolies and competitive entities. Monopolies will remain where a single entity can provide the lowest cost to customers. Competitive entities will appear where competition can provide the lowest cost. Natural monopolies will be re-regulated so that appropriate incentives exist to provide electricity at reasonable prices. Competitive entities would operate outside of traditional regulation.