Evergy’s footprint/Graphic courtesy of Evergy

By BRENT MARTIN

St. Joseph Post

KCP&L is no more.

The long-time Kansas City utility which serves St. Joseph has merged with Westar, an eastern Kansas electric utility. The two have changed their name to Evergy.

Evergy spokesman Dan Hegeman says it’s a natural fit for two utilities with similar cultures.

“Westar was the investor-owned utility in Kansas that served much of the area, northeast Kansas as well as the Wichita, Topeka areas and will continue serving that, but under the new name of Evergy,” Hegeman tells St. Joseph Post.

Evergy might be a new name, but the merger actually was completed more than a year ago. The new name is a combination of “ever and energy.”

Under the merger, the utility became a Fortune 500 company.

Hegeman says there are advantages to this merger.

“The opportunity to drive some efficiencies from a combined company, reduce some of the overhead; and we are very dedicated and actually under commission to drive those efficiencies out of the two combined companies and to give benefit back to our customers that we have in Kansas and Missouri,” according to Hegeman.

Evergy has a large, regional footprint. It stretches from Nevada in southwestern Missouri and Wichita in south-central Kansas north to the Iowa-Nebraska border. The utility will come under the regulation of the Missouri Public Service Commission and the Kansas Corporation Commission.