Xcel Energy names new leader in Minnesota

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Xcel Energy has a new chief executive officer of its Minnesota operations, the Star Tribune reports.

The Minneapolis-based utility announced at its annual meeting that Dave Sparby, a veteran executive with the company, will step into the role.

Xcel is promoting current regional CEO Judy Poferl to corporate secretary. She's replacing Cathy Hart, who is retiring after 13 years in the position.

Ben Fowke, Xcel's CEO, told the newspaper that Sparby's experience is needed as Minnesota regulators weigh the company's request for an 8.2 percent rate increase.

Xcel originally asked state regulators for a 10.7 percent rate hike. The company eventually trimmed the request to a 8.2 percent increase, which the Minnesota Commerce Department still deemed too high.

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