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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549

FORM 10-K

[X] ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES
EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018

or
  
[  ] TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES
EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

For the transition period from _______to_______

http://api.tenkwizard.com/cgi/image?quest=1&rid=23&ipage=12727978&doc=38
 
 
Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter,
 
 
Commission
 
state of incorporation, address of principal
 
I.R.S. Employer
File Number
 
executive offices and telephone number
 
Identification Number
 
 
 
 
 
001-38515
 
EVERGY, INC.
 
82-2733395
 
 
(a Missouri Corporation)
 
 
 
 
1200 Main Street
 
 
 
 
Kansas City, Missouri  64105
 
 
 
 
(816) 556-2200
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
001-03523
 
WESTAR ENERGY, INC.
 
48-0290150
 
 
(a Kansas Corporation)
 
 
 
 
818 South Kansas Avenue
 
 
 
 
Topeka, Kansas 66612
 
 
 
 
(785) 575-6300
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
000-51873
 
KANSAS CITY POWER & LIGHT COMPANY
 
44-0308720
 
 
(a Missouri Corporation)
 
 
 
 
1200 Main Street
 
 
 
 
Kansas City, Missouri  64105
 
 
 
 
(816) 556-2200
 
 
Each of the following classes or series of securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act is registered on the New York Stock Exchange:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Registrant
 
Title of each class
 
 
 
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
Common Stock, without par value
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: Westar Energy, Inc. Common Stock $0.01 par value and Kansas City Power & Light Company Common Stock without par value.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 



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Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act.
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act.

 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.

 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files).
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
Yes
x
 
 
No
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (§229.405 of this chapter) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of registrant's knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to the Form 10-K.
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
 
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
 
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
 
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of "large accelerated filer," "accelerated filer," "smaller reporting company," and "emerging growth company" in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Large Accelerated Filer
 
Accelerated Filer
 
Non-accelerated Filer
 
Smaller Reporting Company
 
Emerging Growth Company
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
x
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
x
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
x
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
o
 
 
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
 
o
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).
 
Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company
 
 
 
 
Yes
o
 
 
No
x
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


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The aggregate market value of the voting and non-voting common equity held by non-affiliates of Evergy, Inc. (based on the closing price of its common stock on the New York Stock Exchange on June 30, 2018) was approximately $15,236,578,926. All of the common equity of Westar Energy, Inc. and Kansas City Power & Light Company is held by Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
On February 15, 2019, Evergy, Inc. had 254,630,033 shares of common stock outstanding. 
 
On February 15, 2019, Westar Energy, Inc. and Kansas City Power & Light Company each had one share of common stock outstanding and held by Evergy, Inc.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Westar Energy, Inc. and Kansas City Power & Light Company meet the conditions set forth in General Instruction (I)(1)(a) and (b) of Form 10-K and are therefore filing this Form 10-K with the reduced disclosure format.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Documents Incorporated by Reference
 
Portions of the 2019 annual meeting proxy statement of Evergy, Inc. to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission are incorporated by reference in Part III of this report.
 
This combined annual report on Form 10-K is provided by the following registrants: Evergy, Inc. (Evergy), Westar Energy, Inc. (Westar Energy) and Kansas City Power & Light Company (KCP&L) (collectively, the Evergy Companies). Information relating to any individual registrant is filed by such registrant solely on its own behalf. Each registrant makes no representation as to information relating exclusively to the other registrants.


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TABLE OF CONTENTS
 
 
Page
Number
 
 
 
 
Item 1.
Item 1A.
Item 1B.
Item 2.
Item 3.
Item 4.
Item 5.
Item 6.
Item 7.
Item 7A.
Item 8.
Item 9.
Item 9A.
Item 9B.
Item 10.
Item 11.
Item 12.
Item 13.
Item 14.
Item 15.
 
 
 
 


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CAUTIONARY STATEMENTS REGARDING CERTAIN FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION
Statements made in this report that are not based on historical facts are forward-looking, may involve risks and uncertainties, and are intended to be as of the date when made. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements relating to the expected financial and operational benefits of the merger of Great Plains Energy Incorporated (Great Plains Energy) and Westar Energy that resulted in the creation of Evergy (including cost savings, operational efficiencies and the impact of the merger on earnings per share), cost estimates of capital projects, dividend growth, share repurchases, balance sheet and credit ratings, rebates to customers, the outcome of regulatory and legal proceedings, employee issues and other matters affecting future operations.
In connection with the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the Evergy Companies are providing a number of important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the provided forward-looking information. These important factors include: future economic conditions and any related impact on sales, prices and costs; prices and availability of electricity in wholesale markets; market perception of the energy industry and the Evergy Companies; changes in business strategy or operations; the impact of unpredictable federal, state and local political, legislative, judicial and regulatory actions or developments, including deregulation, re-regulation and restructuring of the electric utility industry; decisions of regulators regarding rates that Westar Energy and KCP&L (or other regulated subsidiaries of Evergy) can charge for electricity; changes in applicable laws, regulations, rules, principles or practices, or the interpretations thereof, governing tax, accounting and environmental matters, including air and water quality and waste management and disposal; changes in the energy trading markets in which the Evergy Companies participate, including retroactive repricing of transactions by regional transmission organizations and independent system operators; the impact of climate change, including reduced demand for coal-based energy because of actual or perceived climate impacts and the development of alternate energy sources; financial market conditions and performance, including changes in interest rates and credit spreads and in availability and cost of capital and the effects on derivatives and hedges, nuclear decommissioning trust and pension plan assets and costs; impairments of long-lived assets or goodwill; credit ratings; inflation rates; effectiveness of risk management policies and procedures and the ability of counterparties to satisfy their contractual commitments; impact of terrorist acts, including cyber terrorism; ability to carry out marketing and sales plans; weather conditions, including weather-related damage and the impact on sales, prices and costs; cost, availability, quality and timely provision of equipment, supplies, labor and fuel; the inherent uncertainties in estimating the effects of weather, economic conditions, climate change and other factors on customer consumption and financial results; ability to achieve generation goals and the occurrence and duration of planned and unplanned generation outages; delays in the anticipated in-service dates and cost increases of generation, transmission, distribution or other projects; the Evergy Companies' ability to successfully manage their transmission and distribution development plans and transmission joint ventures; the inherent risks associated with the ownership and operation of a nuclear facility, including environmental, health, safety, regulatory and financial risks; workforce risks, including increased costs of retirement, health care and other benefits; the possibility that the expected value creation from the merger will not be realized, or will not be realized within the expected time period; difficulties related to the integration of the two companies; disruption from the merger making it more difficult to maintain relationships with customers, employees, regulators or suppliers; the diversion of management time; and other risks and uncertainties.
This list of factors is not all-inclusive because it is not possible to predict all factors. Part I, Item 1A, Risk Factors included in this report should be carefully read for further understanding of potential risks for the Evergy Companies. Other sections of this report and other periodic reports filed by the Evergy Companies with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) should also be read for more information regarding risk factors. Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of the particular statement. The Evergy Companies undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

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GLOSSARY OF TERMS 
The following is a glossary of frequently used abbreviations or acronyms that are found throughout this report.
Abbreviation or Acronym
 
Definition
 
 
 
AEP
 
American Electric Power Company, Inc.
AFUDC
 
Allowance for Funds Used During Construction
Amended Merger Agreement
 
Amended and Restated Agreement and Plan of Merger, dated as of July 9, 2017, by and among Great Plains Energy, Westar Energy, Monarch Energy Holding, Inc. and King Energy, Inc.
AMT
 
Alternative Minimum Tax
ARO
 
Asset Retirement Obligation
ASC
 
Accounting Standards Codification
ASR
 
Accelerated share repurchase
ASU
 
Accounting Standards Update
CCRs
 
Coal combustion residuals
CAA
 
Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990
CO2
 
Carbon dioxide
COLI
 
Corporate-owned life insurance
CPP
 
Clean Power Plan
CWA
 
Clean Water Act
DOE
 
Department of Energy
EIRR
 
Environmental Improvement Revenue Refunding
EPA
 
Environmental Protection Agency
EPS
 
Earnings per common share
ERISA
 
Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended
Evergy
 
Evergy, Inc. and its consolidated subsidiaries
Evergy Board
 
Evergy Board of Directors
Evergy Companies
 
Evergy, Westar Energy, and KCP&L, collectively, which are individual registrants within the Evergy consolidated group
Exchange Act
 
The Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended
FASB
 
Financial Accounting Standards Board
FERC
 
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
FMBs
 
First mortgage bonds
GAAP
 
Generally Accepted Accounting Principles
GHG
 
Greenhouse gas
GMO
 
KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Evergy
GPETHC
 
GPE Transmission Holding Company LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Evergy
Great Plains Energy
 
Great Plains Energy Incorporated
KCC
 
State Corporation Commission of the State of Kansas
KCP&L
 
Kansas City Power & Light Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Evergy, and its consolidated subsidiaries
KDHE
 
Kansas Department of Health & Environment
KGE
 
Kansas Gas and Electric Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Westar Energy
King Energy
 
King Energy, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Evergy
kWh
 
Kilowatt hour

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Abbreviation or Acronym
 
Definition
 
 
 
LTISA
 
Long-Term Incentive and Share Award plan
MEEIA
 
Missouri Energy Efficiency Investment Act
MMBtu
 
Millions of British thermal units
Monarch Energy
 
Monarch Energy Holding, Inc.
MPSC
 
Public Service Commission of the State of Missouri
MW
 
Megawatt
MWh
 
Megawatt hour
NAAQs
 
National Ambient Air Quality Standards
NAV
 
Net Asset Value
NO2
 
Nitrogen dioxide
NRC
 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission
PISA
 
Plant-in service accounting
PM
 
Particulate matter
Prairie Wind
 
Prairie Wind Transmission, LLC, 50% owned by Westar Energy
RSU
 
Restricted share unit
RTO
 
Regional transmission organization
SEC
 
Securities and Exchange Commission
SO2
 
Sulfur dioxide
SPP
 
Southwest Power Pool, Inc.
TCJA
 
Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
TCR
 
Transmission Congestion Rights
TFR
 
Transmission formula rate
Transource
 
Transource Energy, LLC and its subsidiaries, 13.5% owned by GPETHC
WACC
 
Weighted average cost of capital
VIE
 
Variable interest entity
Westar Energy
 
Westar Energy, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Evergy, and its consolidated subsidiaries
WIIN
 
Water Infrastructure Improvements for the Nation
Wolf Creek
 
Wolf Creek Generating Station
WOTUS
 
Waters of the United States


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PART I
ITEM 1. BUSINESS
General
Evergy, Inc., Westar Energy, Inc. and Kansas City Power & Light Company are separate registrants filing this combined annual report on Form 10-K. The terms "Evergy," "Westar Energy," "KCP&L" and "Evergy Companies" are used throughout this report. "Evergy" refers to Evergy, Inc. and its consolidated subsidiaries, unless otherwise indicated. "Westar Energy" refers to Westar Energy, Inc. and its consolidated subsidiaries, unless otherwise indicated. "KCP&L" refers to Kansas City Power & Light Company and its consolidated subsidiaries, unless otherwise indicated. "Evergy Companies" refers to Evergy, Westar Energy, and KCP&L, collectively, which are individual registrants within the Evergy consolidated group.
Information in other Items of this report as to which reference is made in this Item 1 is hereby incorporated by reference in this Item 1. The use of terms such as "see" or "refer to" shall be deemed to incorporate into this Item 1 the information to which such reference is made.
EVERGY, INC.
Evergy is a public utility holding company incorporated in 2017 and headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. Evergy operates primarily through the following wholly-owned direct subsidiaries:
Westar Energy is an integrated, regulated electric utility that provides electricity to customers in the state of Kansas. Westar Energy has one active wholly-owned subsidiary with significant operations, Kansas Gas and Electric Company (KGE).
KCP&L is an integrated, regulated electric utility that provides electricity to customers primarily in the states of Missouri and Kansas.
KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company (GMO) is an integrated, regulated electric utility that provides electricity to customers in the state of Missouri.
GPE Transmission Holding Company, LLC (GPETHC) owns 13.5% of Transource Energy, LLC (Transource) with the remaining 86.5% owned by AEP Transmission Holding Company, LLC, a subsidiary of American Electric Power Company, Inc. (AEP). Transource is focused on the development of competitive electric transmission projects. GPETHC accounts for its investment in Transource under the equity method.
Westar Energy also owns a 50% interest in Prairie Wind Transmission, LLC (Prairie Wind), which is a joint venture between Westar Energy and affiliates of AEP and Berkshire Hathaway Energy Company. Prairie Wind owns a 108-mile, 345 kV double-circuit transmission line that provides transmission service in the Southwest Power Pool, Inc. (SPP). Westar Energy accounts for its investment in Prairie Wind under the equity method.
Evergy assesses financial performance and allocates resources on a consolidated basis (i.e., operates in one segment). Evergy serves approximately 1,588,300 customers located in Kansas and Missouri. Customers include approximately 1,392,500 residences, 188,700 commercial firms and 7,100 industrials, municipalities and other electric utilities. Evergy is significantly impacted by seasonality with approximately one-third of its retail revenues recorded in the third quarter.

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The table below summarizes the percentage of Evergy's revenues by customer classification.
 
2018
 
2017
 
2016
Residential
37%
 
32%
 
33%
Commercial
32%
 
28%
 
29%
Industrial
12%
 
16%
 
16%
Wholesale
10%
 
12%
 
12%
Transmission
7%
 
11%
 
9%
Other
2%
 
1%
 
1%
Total
100%
 
100%
 
100%
The table below summarizes the percentage of Evergy's retail electricity sales by customer class.
 
2018
 
2017
 
2016
Residential
37%
 
32%
 
33%
Commercial
41%
 
38%
 
39%
Industrial
22%
 
30%
 
28%
Total
100%
 
100%
 
100%
Merger of Great Plains Energy and Westar Energy
Evergy was incorporated in 2017 as Monarch Energy Holding, Inc. (Monarch Energy), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Great Plains Energy Incorporated (Great Plains Energy). Prior to the closing of the merger transactions, Monarch Energy changed its name to Evergy and did not conduct any business activities other than those required for its formation and matters contemplated by the Amended and Restated Agreement and Plan of Merger, dated as of July 9, 2017, by and among Great Plains Energy, Westar Energy, Monarch Energy and King Energy, Inc. (King Energy), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Monarch Energy (Amended Merger Agreement).
On June 4, 2018, Evergy completed the mergers contemplated by the Amended Merger Agreement. As a result of the mergers, Great Plains Energy merged into Evergy, with Evergy surviving the merger and King Energy merged into Westar Energy, with Westar Energy surviving the merger. Following the completion of these mergers, Westar Energy and the direct subsidiaries of Great Plains Energy, including KCP&L and GMO, became wholly-owned subsidiaries of Evergy.
The merger was structured as a merger of equals in a tax-free exchange of shares that involved no premium paid or received with respect to either Great Plains Energy or Westar Energy. As a result of the closing of the merger transaction, each outstanding share of Great Plains Energy common stock was converted into 0.5981 shares of Evergy common stock and each outstanding share of Westar Energy common stock was converted into 1 share of Evergy common stock.
Westar Energy was determined to be the accounting acquirer in the merger and thus, the predecessor of Evergy. Therefore, Evergy's consolidated financial statements reflect the results of operations of Westar Energy for 2017 and 2016 and the financial position of Westar Energy as of December 31, 2017. The results of Great Plains Energy's direct subsidiaries have been included in Evergy's results of operations from the date of the closing of the merger and thereafter.
See Note 2 to the consolidated financial statements for more information regarding the merger.
Regulation
Westar Energy and KCP&L's Kansas operations are regulated by the State Corporation Commission of the State of Kansas (KCC) and KCP&L's Missouri operations and GMO are regulated by the Public Service Commission of the State of Missouri (MPSC), in each case with respect to retail rates, certain accounting matters, standards of service and, in certain cases, the issuance of securities, certification of facilities and service territories. The Evergy

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Companies are also subject to regulation by The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) with respect to transmission, wholesale sales and rates, and other matters. Evergy has a 94% ownership interest in Wolf Creek Generating Station (Wolf Creek), which is subject to regulation by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) with respect to licensing, operations and safety-related requirements.
The table below summarizes the rate orders in effect for Westar Energy's, KCP&L's and GMO's retail rate jurisdictions.
 
Regulator
Allowed Return on Equity
Rate-Making Equity Ratio
Effective Date
Westar Energy
KCC
9.3%
51.46%
September 2018
KCP&L Kansas
KCC
9.3%
49.09%
December 2018
KCP&L Missouri
MPSC
(a)
(a)
December 2018
GMO
MPSC
(a)
(a)
December 2018
(a) KCP&L's and GMO's current MPSC rate order does not contain an allowed return on equity or rate-making equity ratio.
Evergy expects its Kansas and Missouri jurisdictional retail revenues to be approximately 60% and 40%, respectively, based on historical averages of Westar Energy's, KCP&L's and GMO's retail revenues.
See Item 7 MD&A, Critical Accounting Policies section, and Note 5 to the consolidated financial statements for additional information concerning regulatory matters.
Competition
Missouri and Kansas continue to operate on the fully integrated and regulated retail utility model. As a result, the Evergy Companies do not compete with others to supply and deliver electricity in their franchised service territories in exchange for agreeing to have their terms of service regulated by state regulatory bodies. If Missouri or Kansas were to pass and implement legislation authorizing or mandating retail choice, Evergy may no longer be able to apply regulated utility accounting principles to deregulated portions of its operations which may require a surcharge to recover certain costs from legacy customers or could lead to a write off of certain regulatory assets and liabilities.
Evergy competes in the wholesale market to sell power in circumstances when the power it generates is not required for retail customers in its service territory. This competition primarily occurs within the SPP Integrated Marketplace, in which Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO are participants. This marketplace determines which generating units among market participants should run, within the operating constraints of a unit, at any given time for maximum regional cost-effectiveness.
The SPP Integrated Marketplace is similar to other Regional Transmission Organization (RTO) or Independent System Operator (ISO) markets currently operating in other regions of the United States.
Power Supply
Evergy has approximately 14,500 MWs of owned generating capacity and renewable purchased power agreements. Evergy's owned generation and purchased power from others, as a percentage of total MWhs generated and purchased, was approximately 71% and 29%, respectively, for 2018. Evergy purchases power to meet its customers' needs, to satisfy firm power commitments or to meet renewable energy standards. Management believes Evergy will be able to meet its future purchased power demands due to the coordination of planning and operations in the SPP region and existing power purchase agreements; however, price and availability of power purchases may be impacted during periods of high demand.

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Evergy's total capacity by fuel type, including both owned generating capacity and purchased power agreements, is detailed in the table below.
Fuel Type
Estimated MW Capacity
Percent of Total Capacity
Coal
5,890

40

%
Natural gas and oil
3,991

27

 
Wind (a)
3,442

24

 
Uranium
1,104

8

 
Solar, landfill gas and hydroelectric (b)
75

1

 
Total capacity
14,502

100

%
(a)MWs are based on nameplate capacity of the wind facility. Includes owned generating capacity of 579 MWs and long-term power purchase agreements of approximately 2,863 MWs of wind generation that expire in 2028 through 2048.
(b) Includes a long-term power purchase agreement for approximately 66 MWs of hydroelectric generation that expires in 2023.
Evergy's projected peak summer demand for 2019 is approximately 10,350 MWs. Evergy expects to meet its projected capacity requirements for the foreseeable future with its existing generation assets and power and capacity purchases.
Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO are members of the SPP. The SPP is a FERC-approved RTO with the responsibility to ensure reliable power supply, adequate transmission infrastructure and competitive wholesale electricity prices in the region. As SPP members, Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO are required to maintain a minimum reserve margin of 12%. This net positive supply of capacity is maintained through generation asset ownership, capacity agreements, power purchase agreements and peak demand reduction programs. The reserve margin is designed to support reliability of the region's electric supply.
Fuel
The fuel sources for Evergy's owned generation and purchased power agreements are coal, wind and other renewable sources, uranium and natural gas and oil. The actual 2018 fuel mix and fuel cost in cents per net kilowatt hour (kWh) delivered are outlined in the following table and include full-year 2018 amounts for Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO.
 
 
 
 
Fuel cost in cents per
 
Fuel Mix(a)
 
net kWh delivered
 
Actual
 
Actual
Fuel
2018
 
2018
Coal
55
%
 
$2.13
Wind, hydroelectric, landfill gas and solar(b)
23
 
 
0.01
Uranium
17
 
 
0.61
Natural gas and oil
5
 
 
3.81
   Total
100
%
 
$1.78
(a) Fuel mix based on percent of net MWhs generated by owned resources and delivered under purchased power agreements.
(b) Fuel cost in cents per net kWh delivered does not include purchased power costs associated with renewable purchased power agreements. The actual 2018 fuel and purchased power cost in cents per net kWh delivered for wind, hydroelectric, landfill gas and solar was $2.87.
Coal
During 2019, Evergy's generating units, including jointly-owned units, are projected to burn approximately 18 million tons of coal. Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO have entered into coal-purchase contracts with various suppliers in Wyoming's Powder River Basin (PRB), the nation's principal supply region of low-sulfur coal, and with local suppliers. The coal to be provided under these contracts is expected to satisfy approximately 80% of the projected coal requirements for 2019 and approximately 55% for 2020. The

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remainder of the coal requirements is expected to be fulfilled through entering into additional contracts or spot market purchases.
Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO have also entered into rail transportation contracts with various railroads to transport coal from the PRB and local suppliers to their generating units. The transportation services to be provided under these contracts are expected to satisfy almost all of the projected transportation requirements for 2019 and 2020. The contract rates adjust for changes in railroad costs.
Nuclear Fuel
Westar Energy and KCP&L each owns 47% of Wolf Creek, which is Evergy's only nuclear generating unit. Wolf Creek purchases uranium and has it processed for use as fuel in its reactor. This process involves conversion of uranium concentrates to uranium hexafluoride, enrichment of uranium hexafluoride and fabrication of nuclear fuel assemblies. The owners of Wolf Creek have on hand or under contract all of the uranium, uranium enrichment and conversion services needed to operate Wolf Creek through March 2027. The owners also have under contract all of the uranium fabrication required to operate Wolf Creek through September 2025.
Natural Gas
Natural gas accounted for approximately 8% of the total MMBtu of fuel consumed and approximately 14% of total fuel expense in 2018. From time to time, Evergy may enter into contracts, including the use of derivatives, in an effort to manage the cost of natural gas. For additional information about our exposure to commodity price risks, see Item 7A., Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk.
Westar Energy maintains natural gas transportation arrangements with Kansas Gas Service and Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline. The Kansas Gas Service agreement has historically expired on April 30 of each year and is renegotiated for an additional one-year term.
Environmental Matters
There have been political, legal and regulatory efforts to influence climate change, such as efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), impose a tax on emissions and create incentives for low-carbon generation and energy efficiency. These efforts, and climate change itself, have the potential to adversely affect the Evergy Companies' results of operations, financial position and cash flows. See Part I, Item 1A, Risk Factors, for additional information.
The Evergy Companies have taken, and will continue to take, proactive measures to mitigate the impact of climate change on its businesses. For example, the Evergy Companies regularly conduct preparedness exercises for a variety of disruptive events, including storms, which may become more frequent or intense due to climate change. In addition, the Evergy Companies have invested, and will continue to invest, in grid resiliency. Much of the Evergy Companies' infrastructure is aged, and grid resiliency efforts include building additional transmission and distribution lines, replacing aged infrastructure and proactively managing the vegetation that can damage systems during severe weather. The Evergy Companies also monitor water conditions at their generating facilities, and focus on water conservation at these facilities to address resource depletion.
The Evergy Companies are committed to a long-term strategy to reduce carbon emissions in a cost-effective and reliable manner. Public attention is currently focused on reducing emissions and closing coal-fired generating units. Diversity of fuel supply has historically proven to provide benefits in terms of cost and reliability. In addition, the Evergy Companies must ensure that they prudently utilize the generation assets that regulators have allowed the Evergy Companies to include in rates and avoid "stranding" assets by prematurely closing facilities. The Evergy Companies use an integrated resource plan, which is a detailed analysis that estimates factors that influence the future supply and demand for electricity. The integrated resource plan considers forecasts of future electricity demand, fuel prices, transmission improvements, new generating capacity, integration of renewables, energy storage, energy efficiency and demand response initiatives. Strategies that the Evergy Companies have pursued include:

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retiring fossil fuel generation;
developing renewable energy facilities;
collaborating with regulators to offer customers the opportunity to procure electricity produced with renewable resources; and
investing in customer energy efficiency programs.
The Evergy Companies are also committed to transparency. On its website, www.evergyinc.com, Evergy provides quantitative and qualitative data regarding various environmental, social and governance matters, including information related to emissions, waste and water. The content of the website and report is not incorporated into this filing.
See Note 14 to the consolidated financial statements for information regarding environmental matters.
WESTAR ENERGY, INC.
Westar Energy, a Kansas corporation incorporated in 1924 and headquartered in Topeka, Kansas, is an integrated, regulated electric utility that engages in the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity. Westar Energy serves approximately 711,600 customers located in central and eastern Kansas. Customers include approximately 620,200 residences, 86,800 commercial firms, and 4,600 industrials, municipalities and other electric utilities. Westar Energy's retail revenues averaged approximately 76% of its total operating revenues over the last three years. Wholesale firm power, bulk power sales, transmission and miscellaneous electric revenues accounted for the remainder of Westar Energy's revenues. Westar Energy is significantly impacted by seasonality with approximately one-third of its retail revenues recorded in the third quarter.
KANSAS CITY POWER & LIGHT COMPANY
KCP&L, a Missouri corporation incorporated in 1922 and headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, is an integrated, regulated electric utility that engages in the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity. KCP&L serves approximately 549,900 customers located in western Missouri and eastern Kansas. Customers include approximately 485,300 residences, 62,600 commercial firms, and 2,000 industrials, municipalities and other electric utilities. KCP&L's retail revenues averaged approximately 92% of its total operating revenues over the last three years. Wholesale firm power, bulk power sales and miscellaneous electric revenues accounted for the remainder of KCP&L's revenues. KCP&L is significantly impacted by seasonality with approximately one-third of its retail revenues recorded in the third quarter. Missouri and Kansas jurisdictional retail revenues for KCP&L averaged approximately 57% and 43%, respectively, of total retail revenues over the last three years.
Employees
At December 31, 2018, the Evergy Companies had 4,832 employees, including 2,652 represented by five local unions of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). Evergy also has a 94% ownership share in Wolf Creek, which has 889 employees, including 495 represented by a local union of the IBEW and a local union of the United Government Security Officers of America (UGSOA). Westar Energy has labor agreements with IBEW Locals 304 and 1523 (expires June 30, 2021). KCP&L has labor agreements with IBEW Local 1613, representing clerical employees (expires March 31, 2021), with IBEW Local 1464, representing transmission and distribution workers (expires January 31, 2021), and with IBEW Local 412, representing power plant workers (expires February 28, 2021). Wolf Creek has labor agreements with IBEW Local 225 (expires September 20, 2021) and UGSOA Local 252 (expires July 31, 2020).

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Executive Officers
Set forth below is information relating to the executive officers of Evergy, Inc. Each executive officer holds the same position with each of Westar Energy, Inc., Kansas City Power & Light Company, Kansas Gas and Electric Company and KCP&L Greater Missouri Operations Company as he or she does with Evergy, Inc. Executive officers serve at the pleasure of the board of directors. There are no family relationships among any of the executive officers, nor any arrangements or understandings between any executive officer and other persons pursuant to which he or she was appointed as an executive officer.
Name
Age
Current Position(s)
Year First Assumed an Officer Position*
Terry Bassham (a)
58
President and Chief Executive Officer
2005
Kevin E. Bryant (b)
43
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer
2006
Gregory A. Greenwood (c)
53
Executive Vice President, Strategy and Chief Administrative Officer
2003
Anthony D. Somma (d)
55
Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer
2006
Jerl L. Banning (e)
57
Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer
2010
Heather A. Humphrey (f)
48
Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
2010
Charles A. Caisley (g)
45
Senior Vice President, Marketing and Public Affairs and Chief Customer Officer
2011
Steven P. Busser (h)
50
Vice President - Risk Management and Controller
2014
*
Denotes the year in which the individual first assumed an officer position with any of Great Plains Energy, Westar Energy, KCP&L, KGE or GMO.
(a)
Mr. Bassham was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Bassham served as Chairman of the Board of Great Plains Energy (2013-2018), and had served as Chief Executive Officer of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO since 2012. He has served as President of each company since 2011. He previously served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2011-2012) and as Executive Vice President - Utility Operations of KCP&L and GMO (2010-2011). He was Executive Vice President - Finance and Strategic Development and Chief Financial Officer of Great Plains Energy (2005-2010) and of KCP&L and GMO (2009-2010).
(b)
Mr. Bryant was appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Bryant previously served as Senior Vice President - Finance and Strategy and Chief Financial Officer of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2015-2018). He previously served as Vice President - Strategic Planning of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2014). He served as Vice President - Investor Relations and Strategic Planning and Treasurer of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2013). He served as Vice President - Investor Relations and Treasurer of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2011-2013). He was Vice President - Strategy and Risk Management of KCP&L and GMO (2011) and Vice President - Energy Solutions of KCP&L (2006-2011) and GMO (2008-2011).
(c)
Mr. Greenwood was appointed Executive Vice President, Strategy and Chief Administrative Officer of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Greenwood previously served in the following officer roles for Westar Energy: Senior Vice President, Strategy (2011-2018); Vice President, Major Construction Projects (2006-2011); and Treasurer (2003-2006). Mr. Greenwood also served in the following roles for Westar Energy: Executive/Senior Director, Corporate Finance (1999-2003); Director, Financial Strategy and Acting Director, Internal Audit (1999-2000); and Director, Financial Strategy (1998-1999). Mr. Greenwood joined Westar Energy in 1993.
(d)
Mr. Somma was appointed Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Somma previously served as Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer (2011-2018) for Westar Energy, after having been appointed as Treasurer in 2006 and Vice President in 2009. He also served as Executive Director, Generation (2004-2006), Executive Director, Finance (1998-1999) and Director, Corporate Strategy (1996-1998) of Westar Energy, after having joined the company in 1994. From 1999 to 2004, Mr. Somma served in various leadership roles with a former affiliate of Westar Energy, including Senior Vice President, Finance and Administration, Chief Financial Officer and Secretary.

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(e)
Mr. Banning was appointed Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Banning previously served in the following officer roles for Westar Energy: Senior Vice President, Operations Support and Administration (2015-2018); Vice President, Human Resources and IT (2014); and Vice President, Human Resources (2010- 2013). Mr. Banning also served as Executive Director of Human Resources for Westar Energy (2008-2010).
(f)
Ms. Humphrey was appointed Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Ms. Humphrey previously served as Senior Vice President - Corporate Services and General Counsel of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2016-2018). She previously served as General Counsel (2010-2016) and Senior Vice President - Human Resources of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2012-2016). She served as Vice President - Human Resources of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2010-2012). She was Senior Director of Human Resources and Interim General Counsel of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2010) and Managing Attorney of KCP&L (2007-2010).
(g)
Mr. Caisley was appointed Senior Vice President, Marketing and Public Affairs and Chief Customer Officer of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Caisley served as Vice President - Marketing and Public Affairs of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2011-2018). He was Senior Director of Public Affairs (2008-2011) and Director of Governmental Affairs of KCP&L (2007-2008).
(h)
Mr. Busser was appointed Vice President - Risk Management and Controller of Evergy, Inc. in June 2018. Mr. Busser was appointed Vice President - Risk Management and Controller of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO in 2016. He previously served as Vice President - Business Planning and Controller of Great Plains Energy, KCP&L and GMO (2014-2016). He served as Vice President - Treasurer of El Paso Electric Company (2011-2014). Prior to that, he served as Vice President - Treasurer and Chief Risk Officer (2006-2011) and Vice President - Regulatory Affairs and Treasurer (2004-2006) of El Paso Electric Company.
ITEM 1A. RISK FACTORS
Utility Regulatory Risks:
Prices are subject to regulatory review and may not prove adequate to recover costs or provide a fair return.
The prices that the Evergy Companies are allowed to charge their customers significantly influence their results of operations, financial position and cash flows.  These prices are subject to the determination, in large part, of governmental entities, including the MPSC, KCC and FERC.
In general, utilities are allowed to recover costs (including a reasonable return on invested capital) that were prudently incurred to provide utility service.  There can be no assurance, however, that regulators will determine such costs to have been prudently incurred. Further, the amounts approved by the regulators may not be sufficient to allow for a recovery of costs or provide for an adequate return on and of capital investments. Also, amounts that were approved by regulators may be modified, limited or eliminated by regulatory or legislative actions. Any decisions made by these regulators could have a material adverse effect on the results of operations, financial condition and cash flows of Evergy and its utility subsidiaries.
The Evergy Companies are also exposed to cost-recovery shortfalls due to the inherent "regulatory lag" in the rate-setting process. This is because utility rates are generally based on historical information and, except for certain situations where regulators allow for recovery of expenses through use of a formula that tracks costs, are not subject to adjustment between rate cases. In connection with the merger, Westar Energy and KCP&L agreed to a five-year base rate moratorium in Kansas beginning in December 2018. See Note 2 to the consolidated financial statements for additional information. In addition, effective as of January 1, 2019, KCP&L and GMO elected into plant-in service accounting (PISA), which, by law, requires each company to keep base rates constant for three years following KCP&L's and GMO's last general rate case. See Item 7 Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations, Executive Summary for additional information on PISA. These and other factors may result in under-recovery of costs or failure to earn the authorized return on investment, or both.
Failure to timely recover the full investment costs of capital projects, the impact of renewable energy and energy efficiency programs, other utility costs and expenses due to regulatory disallowances, regulatory lag or other factors

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could lead to lowered credit ratings, reduced access to capital markets, increased financing costs, lower flexibility due to constrained financial resources and increased collateral security requirements or reductions or delays in planned capital expenditures.  In response to competitive, economic, political, legislative, public perception and regulatory pressures, Evergy and its utility subsidiaries may be subject to rate moratoriums, rate refunds, limits on rate increases, lower allowed returns on investments or rate reductions, including phase-in plans designed to spread the impact of rate increases over an extended period for the benefit of customers. Any of these results could have a material adverse effect on the results of operations, financial condition and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
Regulatory requirements regarding utility operations may increase costs and may expose the Evergy Companies to compliance penalties or adverse rate consequences.
FERC, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) and SPP have implemented and enforce an extensive set of transmission system reliability, cybersecurity and critical infrastructure protection standards that apply to public utilities.  The MPSC and KCC have the authority to implement utility operational standards and requirements, such as vegetation management standards, facilities inspection requirements and quality of service standards.  In addition, Evergy is also subject to health, safety and other requirements enacted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Labor and other federal and state agencies.  As discussed more fully under "Operational Risks," the NRC extensively regulates nuclear power plants, including Wolf Creek. The costs of complying with existing, new or modified regulations, standards and other requirements could have a material adverse effect on the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.  In addition, failure to meet quality of service, reliability, cybersecurity, critical infrastructure protection, operational or other standards and requirements could expose the Evergy Companies to penalties, additional compliance costs or adverse rate consequences, any of which could have a material adverse impact on their results of operations, financial position and cash flows.
Environmental Risks:
Costs to comply with environmental laws and regulations, including those relating to GHG emissions, are and may continue to be significant and may adversely impact operations and financial results.
The Evergy Companies are subject to extensive and frequently changing federal, state and local environmental laws, regulations and permit requirements relating to air and water quality, waste management and hazardous substance disposal, protected natural resources (such as wetlands, endangered species and other protected wildlife) and health and safety.  For example, Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO combust large amounts of fossil fuels in the production of electricity, which results in significant emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other GHGs. Federal legislation regulates the emission of GHGs and numerous states and regions have adopted programs to stabilize or reduce GHG emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) regulate emissions under the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (CAA), water under the Clean Water Act (CWA) and waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), among other laws and regulations. See Note 14 to the consolidated financial statements for additional information.
Compliance with these laws, regulations and requirements entails significant capital and operating resources, and the failure to comply could result in the imposition of substantial penalties, including fines, injunctive relief and other sanctions.  In addition, there is a risk of lawsuits alleging violations of environmental laws, regulations or requirements, claiming creation of a public nuisance or other matters, and seeking injunctions or monetary damages or other relief. Certain federal courts have held that state and local governments and private parties have standing to bring climate change tort suits seeking company-specific emission reductions and damages.
Environmental permits are subject to periodic renewal, which may result in more stringent permit conditions and limits.  New facilities, or modifications of existing facilities, may require new environmental permits or amendments to existing permits.  Delays in the environmental permitting process, public opposition and challenges, denials of permit applications, limits or conditions imposed in permits and the associated uncertainty may materially adversely affect the cost and timing of projects, and thus materially adversely affect the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies. In addition, compliance with environmental laws,

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regulations and requirements could alter the way assets are managed, which in turn could result in retiring assets earlier than expected, recording asset retirement obligations (AROs) or having a regulator disallow recovery of costs that had been prudently incurred in connection with those assets.
Costs of compliance with environmental laws, regulations and requirements, or fines, penalties or negative lawsuit outcomes, if not recovered in rates from customers, could have a material adverse effect on the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.  
Financial Risks:
Financial market disruptions or declines in the Evergy Companies' credit ratings may increase financing costs and/or limit access to the credit markets, which may adversely affect liquidity and results.
The Evergy Companies rely on internally generated cash, access to capital markets and short-term credit to fund capital expenditures and for working capital and liquidity. Disruption in capital markets, increases in interest rates, deterioration in the financial condition of the financial institutions on which the Evergy Companies rely, any credit rating downgrade or any decrease in the market price of Evergy's common stock could have material adverse effects on the Evergy Companies.  These effects could include, among others: reduced access to capital and increased cost of borrowed funds; dilution resulting from equity issuances at reduced prices; changes in the type and/or increases in the amount of collateral or other credit support obligations required to be posted with contractual counterparties; increased nuclear decommissioning trust and pension and other post-retirement benefit plan funding requirements; reduced ability to pay dividends or repurchase shares of Evergy common stock; rate case disallowance of costs of capital; reductions in or delays of capital expenditures; limitation in or the ability of Evergy to provide credit support for its subsidiaries.  Further, Westar Energy and KCP&L have outstanding tax-exempt bonds that may be put back to the respective issuer at the option of the holder. In addition, market disruption and volatility could have an adverse impact on Evergy's lenders, suppliers and other counterparties or customers, causing them to fail to meet their obligations.
Evergy's holding company structure could limit its ability to pay dividends on its common stock and to service its debt obligations.
Evergy is a holding company with no significant operations of its own.  The primary source of funds for payment of dividends to its shareholders and its other financial obligations is dividends paid to it by its direct subsidiaries, particularly Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO.  Evergy's subsidiaries are separate legal entities and have no obligation to provide Evergy with funds. The ability of Evergy's subsidiaries to pay dividends or make other distributions, and accordingly, Evergy's ability to pay dividends on its common stock and meet its financial obligations, principally depends on the earnings and cash flows, capital requirements and general financial position of its subsidiaries, as well as regulatory factors, financial covenants, general business conditions and other matters.
In addition, the Evergy Companies are subject to certain corporate and regulatory restrictions and financial covenants that could affect their ability to pay dividends.  Under the Federal Power Act, Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO generally can pay dividends only out of retained earnings. In connection with approval of the merger in Missouri, each of KCP&L and GMO agreed to not pay dividends to Evergy if its credit rating falls below BBB- for S&P Global Ratings or Baa3 for Moody's Investor Services. In connection with approval of the merger in Kansas, each of Westar Energy and KCP&L agreed to not pay dividends to Evergy if (i) the payment would result in an increase in the utility's debt level (excluding short-term debt and debt due within one year) above 60 percent of its total capitalization, absent approval from the KCC or (ii) if its credit rating falls below BBB- for S&P Global Ratings or Baa3 for Moody's Investor Services. As described elsewhere in this Form 10-K, the Evergy Companies are parties to various financing agreements that contain requirements to maintain a certain financial condition that could restrict the amount of dividends the Evergy Companies are permitted to pay, such as maintaining a consolidated indebtedness to consolidated total capitalization ratio of not more than 0.65 to 1.00. Evergy cannot guarantee dividends will be paid in the future or that, if paid, dividends will be at the same amount or with the same frequency as in the past.

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In addition, from time to time Evergy has and may guarantee debt obligations of its subsidiaries. Under the financing agreements to which Evergy is a party, a guarantee of debt may be considered indebtedness for purposes of complying with financial covenants that dictate the extent to which Evergy can borrow money, and any guarantee payments could adversely affect Evergy's liquidity and ability to service its own debt obligations.
Increasing costs associated with defined benefit retirement and postretirement plans, health care plans and other employee benefits could adversely affect Evergy's financial position and liquidity.
A substantial number of Evergy's and Wolf Creek's employees participate in defined benefit retirement and other post-retirement plans.  Former employees also have accrued benefits in defined benefit retirement and other post-retirement plans.  The costs of these plans depend on a number of factors, including the rates of return on plan assets, the level and nature of the provided benefits, discount rates, the interest rates used to measure required minimum funding levels, changes in benefit design, changes in laws or regulations and the amount of any required or voluntary contributions to the plans.  The Evergy Companies have substantial unfunded liabilities under these plans.  Also, if the rate of retirements exceeds planned levels, if these plans experience adverse market returns on investments or if interest rates materially fall, required or voluntary contributions to the plans could be material.  In addition, changes in accounting rules and assumptions related to future costs, returns on investments, interest rates and other actuarial assumptions, including projected retirements, could have a significant adverse impact on the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
The costs of providing health care benefits to employees and retirees have increased in recent years and may continue to rise in the future. Future legislative changes related to health care could also cause significant changes to benefit programs and costs. The increasing costs associated with health care plans could have a significant adverse impact on the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
The use of derivative contracts in the normal course of business could result in losses that could negatively impact the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
The Evergy Companies use derivative instruments, such as swaps, options, futures and forwards, to manage commodity and financial risks.  Losses could be recognized as a result of volatility in the market values of these contracts, if a counterparty fails to perform or if the underlying transactions, which the derivative instruments are intended to hedge, fail to materialize.  In the absence of actively quoted market prices and pricing information from external sources, the valuation of these financial instruments can involve management's judgment or the use of estimates. As a result, changes in the underlying assumptions or use of alternative valuation methods could affect the reported fair value of these contracts.
Tax legislation and an inability to utilize tax credits could adversely impact the financial results and liquidity of the Evergy Companies.
Major tax legislation, known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), was signed into law in December 2017. The TCJA significantly reforms the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (IRC), and is generally effective January 1, 2018. The TCJA contains significant changes to federal corporate income taxation, including reducing the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21%, limiting the deduction for net operating losses, eliminating net operating loss carrybacks and eliminating the use of bonus depreciation on new capital investments. The TCJA reduced revenues and internally generated cash flows due to the reduced collection of taxes in customer prices, which could adversely affect the financial results, liquidity and credit ratings of the Evergy Companies. There may be other material adverse effects of the legislation, such as causing a reduction in deferred income tax assets, and the financial results and liquidity of Evergy could be adversely affected by the TCJA.
Over the last several years, income tax obligations have been reduced due to the continued use of bonus depreciation provisions that allow for an acceleration of deductions for tax purposes and IRS guidance on tax deductions for repairs. Although the TCJA expands bonus depreciation in general, it eliminates bonus depreciation for regulated utilities on new capital investments. The Evergy Companies regularly assess their future ability to utilize tax benefits, including those in the form of net operating loss, tax credit and other tax carryforwards, that are recorded as deferred income tax assets on its balance sheets to determine whether a valuation allowance is necessary. A reduction in, or disallowance of, these tax benefits resulting from a legislative change or adverse determination by a taxing jurisdiction could have an adverse impact on the financial results and liquidity of the

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Evergy Companies. Additionally, changes in corporate tax rates or policy changes, such as those resulting from the TCJA, as well as any inability to generate enough taxable income in the future to utilize all tax benefits before they expire, could have an adverse impact on the financial results and liquidity of the Evergy Companies.
In addition, the Evergy Companies operate wind farms that generate production tax credits that reduce federal income tax obligations. The amount of production tax credits is dependent on the level of electricity output generated by wind farms and the applicable tax credit rate. A variety of operating and economic parameters, including transmission constraints, adverse weather conditions and breakdown or failure of equipment, could significantly reduce the production tax credits generated by these wind farms, which could have an adverse impact on the financial results of the Evergy Companies.
Customer and Weather-Related Risks:
The results of operations, financial position and cash flows of Evergy can be materially affected by changes in customer electricity consumption.
Change in customer behaviors in response to energy efficiency programs, changing conditions and preferences or changes in the adoption of technologies could affect the consumption of energy by customers. Federal and state programs exist to influence the way customers use energy and regulators have mandates to promote energy efficiency. Conservation programs and customers' level of participation in the programs could impact the financial results of the Evergy Companies in adverse ways.
Technological advances, energy efficiency and other energy conservation measures have reduced and will continue to reduce customer electricity consumption. The Evergy Companies generate electricity at central station power plants to achieve economies of scale and produce electricity at a competitive cost. Self-generation and distributed generation technologies, including microturbines, wind turbines, fuel cells and solar cells, as well as those related to the storage of energy produced by these systems, have become competitive with the manner and price at which the Evergy Companies sell electricity. There is also a perception that generating or storing electricity through these technologies is more environmentally friendly than generating electricity with fossil fuels. Increased adoption of these technologies could reduce electricity demand and the pool of customers from whom fixed costs are recovered, resulting in under recovery of the fixed costs of the Evergy Companies. Increased self-generation and the related use of net energy metering, which allows self-generating customers to receive bill credits for surplus power, could put upward price pressure on remaining customers. If the Evergy Companies are unable to adjust prices to reflect reduced electricity demand and increased self-generation and net energy metering, their financial condition and results of operations could be adversely affected.
Changes in customer electricity consumption due to sustained financial market disruptions, downturns or sluggishness in the economy or other factors may also adversely affect the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
Weather is a major driver of the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies and the Evergy Companies are subject to risks associated with climate change.
Weather conditions directly influence the demand for electricity and natural gas and affect the price of energy commodities.  The Evergy Companies are significantly impacted by seasonality, and, due to energy demand created by air conditioning load, highest revenues are typically recorded in the third quarter. Unusually mild winter or summer weather can adversely affect sales.  In addition, severe weather and events, including tornados, snow, fire, rain, flooding and ice storms, can be destructive, causing outages and property damage that can potentially result in additional expenses, lower revenues and additional capital restoration costs.  Storm reserves established by the Evergy Companies may be insufficient to cover these increased costs, and rates may not always be adjusted timely and adequately to reflect these increased costs. Additionally, because many of the Evergy Companies' generating stations utilize water for cooling, low water and flow levels can increase maintenance costs at these stations, result in limited power production and require modifications to plant operations.  High water conditions can also impair planned deliveries of fuel to generating stations operated by the Evergy Companies. Climate change may produce more frequent or severe weather events, such as storms, droughts or floods and could also impact the economic

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health of Evergy's service territories. An increase in the frequency or severity of extreme weather events or a deterioration in the economic health of Evergy's service territories could have a material adverse effect on the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
In addition, political, legal and regulatory efforts to influence climate change, such as efforts to reduce GHG emissions, impose a tax on emissions and create incentives for low-carbon generation and energy efficiency, could result in reduced sales and require significant costs to respond to such efforts. These efforts could also result in the early retirement of generation facilities, which could result in stranded costs if regulators disallow full recovery of investments that were prudent when originally made. Any of the foregoing could adversely affect the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
Operational Risks:
Operational risks may adversely affect the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
The operation of electric generation, transmission, distribution and information systems involves many risks, including breakdown or failure of equipment; aging infrastructure; operator error or contractor or subcontractor failure; problems that delay or increase the cost of returning facilities to service after outages; limitations that may be imposed by equipment conditions or environmental, safety or other regulatory requirements; fuel supply or fuel transportation reductions or interruptions; labor disputes; difficulties with the implementation or operation of information systems; transmission scheduling constraints; and catastrophic events such as fires, floods, droughts, explosions, terrorism, severe weather or other similar occurrences. Many of the Evergy Companies' generation, transmission and distribution resources are aged, which increases the risk of unplanned outages, reduced generation output and higher maintenance expense.  Any equipment or system outage or constraint can, among other things, reduce sales, increase costs and affect the ability to meet regulatory service metrics, customer expectations and regulatory reliability and security requirements.
The Evergy Companies have general liability and property insurance to cover a portion of their facilities, but such policies do not cover transmission or distribution systems, are subject to certain limits and deductibles and do not include business interruption coverage.  Insurance coverage may not be available in the future at reasonable costs or on commercially reasonable terms, and the insurance proceeds received for any loss of, or any damage to, any facilities may not be sufficient to restore the loss or damage.
These and other operating events may reduce revenues or increase costs, or both, and may materially affect the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies.
Physical and cybersecurity breaches, criminal activity, terrorist attacks and other disruptions to facilities or information technology infrastructure could interfere with operations, expose the Evergy Companies or their customers or employees to a risk of loss, expose the Evergy Companies to legal or regulatory liability and cause reputational and other harm.
The Evergy Companies rely upon information technology networks and systems to process, transmit and store electronic information, and to manage or support a variety of business processes and activities, including the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity, supply chain functions and the invoicing and collection of payments from customers. The Evergy Companies also use information technology networks and systems to record, process and summarize financial information and results of operations for internal reporting purposes and to comply with financial reporting, legal and tax requirements. These networks and systems are in some cases owned or managed by third-party service providers. In the ordinary course of business, the Evergy Companies collect, store and transmit sensitive data including operating information, proprietary business information and personal information belonging to customers and employees.
The Evergy Companies' information technology networks and infrastructure, as well as the networks and infrastructure belonging to third-party service providers that the Evergy Companies utilize, may be vulnerable to damage, disruptions or shutdowns due to attacks or breaches by hackers or other unauthorized third parties; error or

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malfeasance by one or more employees or service providers; software or hardware upgrades; additions or replacements; malicious software code; telecommunication failures; natural disasters or other catastrophic events. The occurrence of any of these events could, among other things, impact the reliability or safety of the Evergy Companies' generation, transmission and distribution systems; result in the erasure of data or render the Evergy Companies' equipment, or the equipment of third-party service providers, unusable; impact the Evergy Companies' ability to conduct business in the ordinary course; reduce sales; expose the Evergy Companies and their customers, employees and vendors to a risk of loss or misuse of information; and result in legal claims or proceedings, liability or regulatory penalties, damage the Evergy Companies' reputation or otherwise harm their business. The Evergy Companies can provide no assurance that they will identify and remedy all security or system vulnerabilities or that unauthorized access or error will be identified and remedied.
The Evergy Companies are subject to laws and rules issued by multiple government agencies concerning safeguarding and maintaining the confidentiality of their security, customer and business information. For example, NERC has issued comprehensive regulations and standards surrounding the security of bulk power systems and is continually in the process of developing updated and new requirements with which the utility industry must comply. The NRC also has issued regulations and standards related to the protection of critical digital assets at nuclear power plants. Compliance with NERC and NRC rules and standards, and rules and standards promulgated by other regulatory agencies from time to time or future legislation, will increase the Evergy Companies' compliance costs and their exposure to the potential risk of violations of these rules, standards or future legislation, which includes potential financial penalties. Furthermore, the non-compliance of other utilities with applicable regulations or the occurrence of a serious security event at other utilities could result in increased regulation or oversight, both of which could increase the Evergy Companies' costs and impact their financial results.
Additionally, the Evergy Companies cannot predict the impact that any future information technology or terrorist attack may have on the energy industry in general. The electric utility industry, both within the United States and internationally, has experienced physical and cybersecurity attacks on energy infrastructure such as power plants, substations and related assets in the past, and there will likely be more attacks in the future. The Evergy Companies' facilities could be direct targets or indirect casualties of such attacks. The effects of such attacks could include disruption to the Evergy Companies' generation, transmission and distribution systems or to the electrical grid in general, reduced sales and could increase the cost of insurance coverage or result in a decline in the U.S. economy. Any of the foregoing could have a material adverse impact on the Evergy Companies' operations or financial results.
The cost and schedule of capital projects may materially change and expected performance may not be achieved.
The Evergy Companies' business is capital intensive and regularly includes significant construction projects.  The risks of any capital project include: actual costs may exceed estimated costs; regulators may disallow, limit or delay the recovery of all or part of the cost of, or a return on, a capital project; risks associated with the capital and credit markets to fund projects; delays in receiving, or failure to receive, necessary permits, approvals and other regulatory authorizations; unforeseen engineering problems or changes in project design or scope; the failure of suppliers and contractors to perform as required under their contracts; inadequate availability or increased cost of labor or materials, including commodities such as steel, copper and aluminum that may be subject to uncertain or increased tariffs; inclement weather; new or changed laws, regulations and requirements, including environmental and health and safety laws, regulations and requirements; and other events beyond the Evergy Companies' control may occur that may materially affect the schedule, cost and performance of these projects.
These and other risks could cause the Evergy Companies to defer or limit capital expenditures, materially increase the costs of capital projects, delay the in-service dates of projects, adversely affect the performance of the projects and require the purchase of electricity on the wholesale market, at potentially more expensive prices, until the projects are completed.  Thus, these risks may significantly affect the Evergy Companies' results of operations, financial position and cash flows.

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Failure of one or more generation plant co-owners to pay their share of construction or operations and maintenance costs could increase the Evergy Companies' costs and capital requirements.
The Evergy Companies are co-owners of several large generation plants. See Item 2. Properties, for additional information. Failure by any other co-owner to pay its proportionate share of capital and other costs could materially increase the Evergy Companies' share of the costs. Disputes may also arise between co-owners regarding operation of a plant or the sharing of expenses, which could result in legal expenses and damages and adversely impact the Evergy Companies' financial results.
The Evergy Companies are exposed to risks associated with the ownership and operation of a nuclear generating unit, which could adversely impact the Evergy Companies' business and financial results.
Evergy indirectly owns 94% of Wolf Creek, with Westar Energy and KCP&L each owning 47% of the nuclear plant.  The NRC has broad authority under federal law to impose licensing and safety-related requirements for the operation of nuclear generation facilities, including Wolf Creek.  In the event of non-compliance, the NRC has the authority to impose fines, shut down the facilities, or both, depending upon its assessment of the severity of the situation, until compliance is achieved. Additionally, the non-compliance of other nuclear facility operators with applicable regulations or the occurrence of a serious nuclear incident anywhere in the world could result in increased regulation of the nuclear industry. Such events could increase Wolf Creek's costs and impact the financial results of the Evergy Companies or result in a shutdown of Wolf Creek.
An extended outage of Wolf Creek, whether resulting from NRC action, an incident at the plant or otherwise, could have a material adverse effect on the results of operations, financial position and cash flows of the Evergy Companies in the event replacement power and other costs are not recovered through rates or insurance.  If a long-term outage occurred, the state regulatory commissions could reduce rates by excluding the Wolf Creek investment from rate base.  Wolf Creek was constructed prior to 1986 and the age of Wolf Creek increases the risk of unplanned outages and results in higher maintenance costs.
On an annual basis, Westar Energy and KCP&L are required to contribute money to tax-qualified trusts that were established to pay for decommissioning costs at the end of the unit's life. The amount of contributions varies depending on estimates of decommissioning expenses and projected return on trust assets. If the actual return on trust assets is below the projected level or actual decommissioning costs are higher than estimated, Westar Energy and KCP&L could be responsible for the balance of funds required and may not be allowed to recover the balance through rates.
The Evergy Companies are also exposed to other risks associated with the ownership and operation of a nuclear generating unit, including, but not limited to, (i) potential liability associated with the potential harmful effects on the environment and human health resulting from the operation of a nuclear generating unit, (ii) the storage, handling, disposal and potential release (by accident, through third-party actions or otherwise) of radioactive materials and (iii) uncertainties with respect to contingencies and assessments if insurance coverage is inadequate.  Under the structure for insurance among owners of nuclear generating units, Westar Energy and KCP&L are also liable for potential retrospective premium assessments (subject to a cap) per incident at any commercial reactor in the country and losses in excess of insurance coverage.
In addition, Wolf Creek is reliant on a sole supplier for fuel and related services. The supplier has in the past been the subject of Chapter 11 reorganization proceedings, and an extended outage of Wolf Creek could occur if the supplier is not able to perform under its contracts with Wolf Creek. Switching to another supplier could take an extended amount of time and would require NRC approval. An extended outage at Wolf Creek could affect the amount of Wolf Creek investment included in customer rates and could have a material impact on the Evergy Companies' financial results.
The structure of the regional power market in which the Evergy Companies operate could have an adverse effect on their results of operations, financial position and cash flows.
Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO are members of the SPP regional transmission organization, and each has transferred operational authority (but not ownership) of their transmission facilities to the SPP. The SPP's Integrated Marketplace determines which generating units among market participants should run, within the operating

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constraints of a unit, at any given time for maximum cost-effectiveness. In the event that Westar Energy's, KCP&L's or GMO's generating units are not among the lowest cost generating units operating within the market, each could experience decreased levels of wholesale electricity sales.
A market for Transmission Congestion Rights (TCR) is also included as part of the Integrated Marketplace. TCRs are financial instruments used to hedge transmission congestion charges. Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO acquire TCRs for the purpose of hedging against transmission congestion charges. There is a risk that the entities could incorrectly model the amount of TCRs needed, or that the TCRs acquired could be ineffective in hedging against transmission congestion charges, either of which could lead to increased purchased power costs.
The rules governing the various regional power markets, including the SPP, may change from time to time and such changes could impact the costs and revenues of the Evergy Companies.
Litigation Risks:
The outcome of legal proceedings cannot be predicted.  An adverse finding could have a material adverse effect on the Evergy Companies' results of operations, financial position and cash flows.
The Evergy Companies are parties to various lawsuits and regulatory proceedings in the ordinary course of their respective businesses.  The outcome of these matters cannot be determined, nor, in many cases, can the liability that could potentially result from each case be reasonably estimated.  The liability that the Evergy Companies may incur with respect to any of these cases may be in excess of amounts currently reserved and insured against with respect to such matters and could adversely impact the financial results for the Evergy Companies.
Risks Related to the Merger:
The anticipated benefits of the merger may not be realized.
The Evergy Companies have incurred, and expect to incur additional, significant costs associated with combining the operations of Great Plains Energy and Westar Energy. Additional unanticipated costs may also be incurred in the integration of the businesses of Great Plains Energy and Westar Energy. The Evergy Companies expect the merger to produce various benefits, including, among other things, operating efficiencies and cost savings. However, achieving the anticipated benefits is subject to a number of uncertainties, including:

the ability to efficiently and effectively combine operations of the merged companies;
general market and economic conditions;
general competitive factors in the marketplace; and
higher than expected costs required to achieve the anticipated benefits of the merger.
No assurance can be given that these benefits will be achieved or, if achieved, the timing of their achievement. Integration costs could have a material adverse impact on the results of the Evergy Companies, and a failure to achieve the anticipated benefits of the merger could impair Evergy's ability to repurchase shares and its ability to grow its earnings and dividend. In addition, the Evergy Companies may encounter difficulties in integrating the operations of the companies, including inconsistencies in standards, systems and controls, and management's focus and resources may be diverted from ordinary business activities and opportunities in order to focus on integration efforts. Any of the foregoing could have a material adverse effect on the Evergy Companies.
The price of Evergy common stock may experience volatility.
The price of Evergy common stock may be volatile. Some of the factors that could affect the price of Evergy common stock are quarterly increases or decreases in revenue or earnings, changes in revenue or earnings estimates by the investment community, the ability of the Evergy Companies to implement their integration strategy and to realize the expected synergies and other benefits from the merger, the ability of Evergy to implement its share repurchase program and speculation in the press or investment community about the Evergy Companies' financial condition or results of operations. General market conditions and U.S. economic factors and political events

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unrelated to the performance of the Evergy may also affect Evergy's stock price. For these reasons, shareholders should not rely on historical trends in the price of Great Plains Energy or Westar Energy common stock to predict the price of Evergy's common stock or its financial results.
Capital, credit market conditions or future legislation may adversely impact Evergy's share repurchase program.
Evergy expects to repurchase a significant number of shares over the next several years using a combination of existing cash on the balance sheet, internally generated cash, proceeds from capital markets activities and short-term debt. Disruptions in capital and credit markets, negative credit rating actions and volatility in the market price of Evergy's common stock may make capital more difficult and costlier to obtain, may restrict liquidity and may adversely impact the ability to execute the share repurchase program in a timely or cost-effective manner. Evergy's ability to execute its share repurchase program could also be adversely impacted by the passage of federal legislation prohibiting or significantly restricting the ability of companies to repurchase shares of their own stock.
Evergy has recorded goodwill that could become impaired and adversely affect financial results.
As required by generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), Evergy recorded a significant amount of goodwill on its balance sheet in connection with completion of the merger. Evergy assesses goodwill for impairment on an annual basis or whenever events or circumstances occur that would indicate a potential for impairment. If goodwill is deemed to be impaired, Evergy may be required to incur material non-cash charges that could materially adversely affect its results of operations.
ITEM 1B. UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS
None.

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ITEM 2. PROPERTIES
Generation Resources
 
 
 
 
 
 
Unit Capability (MW) By Owner(a)
Station
Unit No.
Location
Year Completed
Fuel
Westar Energy
KCP&L
GMO
Total Company Generation
Renewable Purchased Power
Total Generation and Renewable Purchased Power
Renewable Generation:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Central Plains
 
 
Kansas
2009
Wind
99



99


 
99

Flat Ridge
 
 
Kansas
2009
Wind
50



50

50

(e)
100

Western Plains
 
 
Kansas
2017
Wind
281



281


 
281

Meridian Way
 
 
Kansas
2008
Wind




96

(e)
96

Ironwood
 
 
Kansas
2012
Wind




168

(e)
168

Post Rock
 
 
Kansas
2012
Wind




201

(e)
201

Cedar Bluff
 
 
Kansas
2015
Wind




199

(e)
199

Kay Wind
 
 
Oklahoma
2015
Wind




200

(e)
200

Ninnescah
 
 
Kansas
2016
Wind




208

(e)
208

Kingman 1
 
 
Kansas
2016
Wind




103

(e)
103

Kingman 2
 
 
Kansas
2016
Wind




103

(e)
103

Rolling Meadows
 
 
Kansas
2010
Landfill Gas




6

(e)
6

Hutch Solar
 
 
Kansas
2017
Solar




1

(e)
1

Cimarron II
 
 
Kansas
2012
Wind




131

(f)
131

Spearville 1
 
 
Kansas
2006
Wind

101


101


 
101

Spearville 2
 
 
Kansas
2010
Wind

48


48


 
48

Spearville 3
 
 
Kansas
2012
Wind




101

(f)
101

Gray County
 
 
Kansas
2001
Wind




110

(g)
110

Ensign
 
 
Kansas
2012
Wind




99

(g)
99

Waverly
 
 
Kansas
2016
Wind




200

(f)
200

Slate Creek
 
 
Kansas
2015
Wind




150

(f)
150

Rock Creek
 
 
Missouri
2017
Wind




300

(h)
300

Osborn
 
 
Missouri
2016
Wind




201

(h)
201

Pratt
 
 
Kansas
2018
Wind




243

(h)
243

CNPPID (NE) - Hydro
 
 
Nebraska
1941
Hydro




66

(f)
66

St Joseph Landfill
 
 
Missouri
2012
Landfill Gas


2

2


 
2

Nuclear:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Wolf Creek
1
(b)
Kansas
1985
Uranium
552

552


1,104


 
1,104

Coal:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Jeffrey Energy Center
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Steam Turbines
1-3
(b)(i)
 
1978, 1980 &1983
Coal
2,012


175

2,187


 
2,187


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Unit Capability (MW) By Owner(a)
Station
Unit No.
Location
Year Completed
Fuel
Westar Energy
KCP&L
GMO
Total Company Generation
Renewable Purchased Power
Total Generation and Renewable Purchased Power
Lawrence Energy Center
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Steam Turbines
4 & 5
 
 
1960, 1971
Coal
484



484


 
484

La Cygne
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Steam Turbines
1 & 2
(b)(c)
 
1973, 1977
Coal
699

699


1,398


 
1,398

Iatan
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Steam Turbines
1 & 2
(b)
 
1980, 2010
Coal

972

285

1,257


 
1,257

Hawthorn
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Steam Turbines
5
(c)(d)
 
1969
Coal

564


564


 
564

Gas and Oil:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Emporia Energy Center
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 7
 
 
2008 - 2009
Natural Gas
646



646


 
646

Gordon Evans Energy Center
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 3
 
 
2000 - 2001
Natural Gas
294



294


 
294

Hutchinson Energy Center
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 3
 
 
1974
Natural Gas
165



165


 
165

 
4
 
 
1975
Oil
70



70


 
70

Spring Creek Energy Center
 
 
Oklahoma
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 4
 
 
2001
Natural Gas
273



273


 
273

State Line (40%)
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combined Cycle
2-1, 2-2 & 2-3
(b)
 
2001
Natural Gas
196



196


 
196

Hawthorn
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combined Cycle
6/9
 
 
2000
Natural Gas

235


235


 
235

Combustion Turbines
7 & 8
 
 
2000
Natural Gas

157


157


 
157

West Gardner
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 4
 
 
2003
Natural Gas

314


314


 
314

Osawatomie
 
 
Kansas
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1
 
 
2003
Natural Gas

76


76


 
76


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Unit Capability (MW) By Owner(a)
Station
Unit No.
Location
Year Completed
Fuel
Westar Energy
KCP&L
GMO
Total Company Generation
Renewable Purchased Power
Total Generation and Renewable Purchased Power
Ralph Green
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
3
 
 
1981
Natural Gas


71

71


 
71

Nevada
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1
 
 
1974
Oil


18

18


 
18

Lake Road
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 3
 
 
1951, 1958 & 1962
Natural Gas


42

42


 
42

 
5 - 7
 
 
1974, 1989 & 1990
Oil


104

104


 
104

Steam Turbines
4
 
 
1967
Natural Gas


97

97


 
97

Northeast
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
11 - 18
 
 
1972 - 1977
Oil

394


394


 
394

Black Start Unit
 
 
 
1985
Oil

2


2


 
2

South Harper
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 3
 
 
2005
Natural Gas


303

303


 
303

Greenwood Energy Center
 
 
Missouri
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 4
 
 
1975 - 1979
Natural Gas


242

242


 
242

Crossroads Energy Center
 
 
Mississippi
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Combustion Turbines
1 - 4
 
 
2002
Natural Gas


292

292


 
292

Total
 
 
 
 
 
5,821

4,114

1,631

11,566

2,936

 
14,502

(a) Capability (except for wind generating facilities) represents accredited net generating capacity approved by the SPP. Capability for wind generating facilities represents the nameplate capacity. Due to the intermittent nature of wind generation, these facilities are associated with a total of 1,301 MW of accredited generating capacity.
(b) Share of a jointly owned unit.
(c) In 1987, KGE entered into a sale-leaseback transaction involving its 50% interest in the La Cygne Unit 2. Evergy and Westar Energy consolidate the leasing entity as a variable interest entity (VIE). See Note 18 to the consolidated financial statements for more information.
(d) In 2001, a new boiler, air quality control equipment and an uprated turbine was placed in service at the Hawthorn Generating Station.
(e) Westar Energy renewable purchased power agreement.
(f) KCP&L renewable purchased power agreement.
(g) GMO renewable purchased power agreement.
(h) KCP&L and GMO renewable purchased power agreement.
(i) Westar Energy leases 8% of the Jeffrey Energy Center. Unit capacity amounts reflect both owned and leased percentages.


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Transmission and Distribution Resources
Evergy's electric transmission system interconnects with systems of other utilities for reliability and to permit wholesale transactions with other electricity suppliers. Evergy has approximately 13,700 circuit miles of transmission lines, 39,700 circuit miles of overhead distribution lines and 12,500 circuit miles of underground distribution lines in Missouri and Kansas. Evergy has all material franchise rights necessary to sell electricity within its retail service territory. Evergy's transmission and distribution systems are routinely monitored for adequacy to meet customer needs. Management believes the current systems are adequate to serve customers.
General
Evergy's generating plants are located on property owned (or co-owned) by the Evergy Companies, except for certain facilities that are located on easements or are contractually controlled. Evergy's service centers, electric substations and a portion of its transmission and distribution systems are located on property owned or leased by Evergy. Evergy's transmission and distribution systems are for the most part located above or underneath highways, streets, other public places or property owned by others. Evergy believes that it has satisfactory rights to use those places or properties in the form of permits, grants, easements, licenses or franchise rights; however, it has not necessarily undertaken efforts to examine the underlying title to the land upon which the rights rest. Evergy's headquarters are located in leased office space.
Substantially all of the fixed property and franchises of the Evergy Companies, which consist principally of electric generating stations, electric transmission and distribution lines and systems, and buildings (subject to exceptions, reservations and releases), are subject to mortgage indentures pursuant to which bonds have been issued and are outstanding. See Note 12 to the consolidated financial statements for more information.
ITEM 3.  LEGAL PROCEEDINGS
Other Proceedings
The Evergy Companies are parties to various lawsuits and regulatory proceedings in the ordinary course of their respective businesses.  For information regarding material lawsuits and proceedings, see Notes 2, 5 and 14 to the consolidated financial statements.  Such information is incorporated herein by reference.
ITEM 4.  MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURES
Not applicable.

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PART II
ITEM 5.  MARKET FOR REGISTRANT'S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES
EVERGY, INC.
Evergy's common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "EVRG." At February 15, 2019, Evergy's common stock was held by 24,165 shareholders of record.
Performance Graph
The following graph compares the performance of Evergy's common stock during the period that began on June 5, 2018 (the first day that Evergy's common stock traded), and ended on December 31, 2018, to the performance of the Standard & Poor's 500 Index (S&P 500) and the Standard & Poor's Electric Utility Index (S&P 500 Electric Utilities). The graph assumes a $100 investment in Evergy's common stock and in each of the indices at the beginning of the period and a reinvestment of dividends paid on such investments throughout the period.
http://api.tenkwizard.com/cgi/image?quest=1&rid=23&ipage=12727978&doc=37


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Purchases of Equity Securities
The following table provides information regarding purchases by Evergy of its equity securities that are registered pursuant to Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (Exchange Act), during the three months ended December 31, 2018.
Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Month
 
Total Number of Shares (or Units) Purchased(a)
Average Price Paid per Share (or Unit)
Total Number of Shares (or Units) Purchased as Part of Publicly Announced Plans or Programs
Maximum Number of Shares (or Units) that May Yet Be Purchased Under the Plans or Programs(a)
October 1 - 31
 
1,341,183

(b) 
1,341,183

51,763,744

November 1 - 30
 
1,228,939

(c) 
1,228,939

50,534,805

December 1 - 31
 
6,903,355

(d) 
6,903,168

43,631,637

Total
 
9,473,477

 
9,473,290

43,631,637

(a) In July 2018, the Evergy Board of Directors (Evergy Board) authorized the repurchase of up to 60 million shares of Evergy's common stock with no expiration date. Evergy expects to repurchase the 60 million shares by mid-2020. See Note 17 to the consolidated financial statements for additional information on Evergy's common stock repurchase program.
(b) In August 2018, Evergy entered into two accelerated share repurchase (ASR) agreements to purchase $450.0 million of Evergy common stock. In October 2018, one of the ASR agreements was settled early at the option of the financial institution, which resulted in the delivery of 848,226 additional shares of Evergy common stock at no additional cost. In total, 3,981,930 shares were delivered under this ASR at an average price paid per share of $56.51. In addition, Evergy repurchased 492,957 shares of common stock in the open market at an average price of $55.97.
(c) In November 2018, the final August 2018 ASR agreement was settled, which resulted in the delivery of 816,405 additional shares of Evergy common stock at no additional cost. In total, 3,950,109 shares were delivered under this ASR at an average price paid per share of $56.96. In addition, Evergy repurchased 412,534 shares of common stock in the open market at an average price of $58.16.
(d)In November 2018, Evergy entered into a new ASR agreement to purchase $475.0 million of Evergy common stock and through which 6,400,539 shares were delivered in December 2018. The final number of shares of Evergy common stock that will ultimately be delivered to Evergy, and therefore the average price paid per share, will be determined at the final settlement of the ASR by March 2019 or earlier at the option of the financial institution. In addition, Evergy repurchased 502,629 shares of common stock in the open market at an average price of $58.94. Evergy also purchased 187 shares for withholding taxes for restricted stock vesting at an average price of $56.45.
Dividend Restrictions
For information regarding dividend restrictions, see Note 17 to the consolidated financial statements.

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ITEM 6. SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA
Year Ended December 31
 
2018(a)
 
2017
 
2016
 
2015
 
2014
Evergy
 
(dollars in millions except per share amounts)
Operating revenues
 
$
4,276

 
$
2,571

 
$
2,562

 
$
2,459

 
$
2,602

Net income
 
$
546

 
$
337

 
$
361

 
$
302

 
$
322

Net income attributable to Evergy, Inc.
 
$
536

 
$
324

 
$
347

 
$
292

 
$
313

Basic earnings per common share
 
$
2.50

 
$
2.27

 
$
2.43

 
$
2.11

 
$
2.40

Diluted earnings per common share
 
$
2.50

 
$
2.27

 
$
2.43

 
$
2.09

 
$
2.35

Total assets at year end
 
$
25,598

 
$
11,624

 
$
11,487

 
$
10,706

 
$
10,289

Total long-term obligations at year end (b)
 
$
7,472

 
$
3,846

 
$
3,699

 
$
3,379

 
$
3,433

Cash dividends per common share
 
$
1.735

 
$
1.60

 
$
1.52

 
$
1.44

 
$
1.40

Westar Energy
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Operating revenues
 
$
2,615

 
$
2,571

 
$
2,562

 
$
2,459

 
$
2,602

Net income
 
$
349

 
$
337

 
$
361

 
$
302

 
$
322

Net income attributable to Westar Energy, Inc.
 
$
339

 
$
324

 
$
347

 
$
292

 
$
313

Total assets at year end
 
$
11,817

 
$
11,624

 
$
11,487

 
$
10,706

 
$
10,289

Total long-term obligations at year end (b)
 
$
3,817

 
$
3,846

 
$
3,699

 
$
3,379

 
$
3,433

KCP&L
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Operating revenues
 
$
1,823

 
$
1,891

 
$
1,875

 
$
1,714

 
$
1,731

Net income
 
$
163

 
$
180

 
$
225

 
$
153

 
$
162

Total assets at year end
 
$
8,121

 
$
8,124

 
$
8,058

 
$
7,815

 
$
7,495

Total long-term obligations at year end (b)
 
$
2,532

 
$
2,582

 
$
2,565

 
$
2,563

 
$
2,297

(a) On June 4, 2018, Evergy completed the mergers contemplated by the Amended Merger Agreement. The results of Great Plains Energy's direct subsidiaries have been included in Evergy's results from the date of the closing of the merger and thereafter. KCP&L amounts are not included in consolidated Evergy for 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014.
(b)Includes long-term debt, current maturities of long-term debt, capital leases, long-term debt of VIEs and current maturities of long-term debt of VIEs.
ITEM 7.  MANAGEMENT'S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
EVERGY, INC.
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Evergy, Inc. is a public utility holding company incorporated in 2017 and headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. Evergy operates primarily through the following wholly-owned direct subsidiaries:
Westar Energy is an integrated, regulated electric utility that provides electricity to customers in the state of Kansas. Westar Energy has one active wholly-owned subsidiary with significant operations, KGE.
KCP&L is an integrated, regulated electric utility that provides electricity to customers in the states of Missouri and Kansas.
GMO is an integrated, regulated electric utility that provides electricity to customers in the state of Missouri.
GPETHC owns 13.5% of Transource with the remaining 86.5% owned by AEP Transmission Holding Company, LLC, a subsidiary of AEP. Transource is focused on the development of competitive electric transmission projects. GPETHC accounts for its investment in Transource under the equity method.

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Westar Energy also owns a 50% interest in Prairie Wind, which is a joint venture between Westar Energy and affiliates of AEP and Berkshire Hathaway Energy Company. Prairie Wind owns a 108-mile, 345 kV double-circuit transmission line that provides transmission service in the SPP. Westar Energy accounts for its investment in Prairie Wind under the equity method.
Westar Energy and KGE conduct business in their respective service territories using the name Westar Energy. KCP&L and GMO conduct business in their respective service territories using the name KCP&L. Collectively, the Evergy Companies have approximately 14,500 MWs of owned generating capacity and renewable purchased power agreements and engage in the generation, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity to approximately 1.6 million customers in the states of Kansas and Missouri. The Evergy Companies assess financial performance and allocate resources on a consolidated basis (i.e., operate in one segment).
Great Plains Energy and Westar Energy Merger
Evergy was incorporated in 2017 as Monarch Energy, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Great Plains Energy. Prior to the closing of the merger transactions, Monarch Energy changed its name to Evergy and did not conduct any business activities other than those required for its formation and matters contemplated by the Amended Merger Agreement. On June 4, 2018, in accordance with the Amended Merger Agreement, Great Plains Energy merged into Evergy, with Evergy surviving the merger and King Energy merged into Westar Energy, with Westar Energy surviving the merger. These merger transactions resulted in Evergy becoming the parent entity of Westar Energy and the direct subsidiaries of Great Plains Energy, including KCP&L and GMO. As a result of the closing of the merger transactions, each outstanding share of Great Plains Energy common stock was converted into 0.5981 shares of Evergy common stock, resulting in the issuance of 128.9 million shares. Additionally, each outstanding share of Westar Energy common stock was converted into 1 share of Evergy common stock.
Westar Energy was determined to be the accounting acquirer and thus, the predecessor of Evergy. Therefore, Evergy's accompanying consolidated financial statements reflect the results of operations of Westar Energy for 2017 and 2016 and the financial position of Westar Energy as of December 31, 2017. Evergy had separate operations for the period beginning with the quarter ended June 30, 2018, and references to amounts for periods after the closing of the merger relate to Evergy. The results of Great Plains Energy's direct subsidiaries have been included in Evergy's results of operations from the date of the closing of the merger and thereafter.
KCP&L has elected not to apply "push-down accounting" related to the merger, whereby the adjustments of assets and liabilities to fair value and the resulting goodwill would be recorded on the financial statements of the acquired subsidiary. These adjustments for KCP&L, as well as those related to the acquired assets and liabilities of Great Plains Energy and its other direct subsidiaries, are only reflected on Evergy's consolidated financial statements.
See Note 2 to the consolidated financial statements for more information regarding the merger.
Common Stock Repurchase Program
In July 2018, the Evergy Board authorized the repurchase of up to 60 million shares of Evergy's common stock. Although this repurchase authorization has no expiration date, Evergy expects to repurchase approximately 60 million shares by mid-2020. Evergy plans to utilize various methods to effectuate the share repurchase program, including but not limited to, a series of transactions that may include ASRs, open market transactions or other means, subject to market conditions and applicable legal requirements. The repurchase program may be suspended, discontinued or resumed at any time. For 2018, Evergy had total repurchases of common stock of approximately $1,042 million and had repurchased 16.4 million shares under the repurchase program. These repurchase totals include shares repurchased under ASR agreements, one of which had not reached final settlement as of December 31, 2018, and are discussed further below.
In August 2018, Evergy entered into two ASR agreements with financial institutions to purchase $450.0 million of Evergy common stock. The ASR agreements reached final settlement in the fourth quarter of 2018 and resulted in the delivery of 7.9 million shares to Evergy based on the average daily volume weighted-average price of Evergy common stock during the term of the ASR agreements, less a negotiated discount.

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In November 2018, Evergy entered into an ASR agreement with a financial institution to purchase $475.0 million of Evergy common stock. In December 2018, the financial institution delivered to Evergy 6.4 million shares of common stock, representing a partial settlement of the contract, based on then-current market prices and Evergy paid a total of $475.0 million. The final number of shares of Evergy common stock that Evergy may receive or be required to remit upon settlement of the ASR agreement will be based on the average daily volume weighted-average price of Evergy common stock during the term of the ASR agreement, less a negotiated discount. Final settlement of the ASR agreement will occur by March 2019, but may occur earlier at the option of the financial institution. Evergy expects that the final settlement of the ASR agreement will result in the delivery of additional shares of common stock to Evergy at no additional cost.
See Note 17 to the consolidated financial statements for more information regarding Evergy's common stock repurchase program.
Missouri Legislation
On June 1, 2018, Missouri Senate Bill (S.B.) 564 was signed into law by the Governor of Missouri. Most notably, S.B. 564 includes a PISA provision that can be elected by Missouri electric utilities to defer to a regulatory asset and recover 85% of depreciation expense and associated return on investment for qualifying electric plant rate base additions. Qualifying electric plant includes all rate base additions with the exception of new coal, nuclear or natural gas generating units or rate base additions that increase revenues by allowing service to new customer premises. The deferred depreciation and return recorded in the associated regulatory asset, except for any prudence disallowances, is required to be included in determining the utility's rate base during subsequent general rate proceedings subject to a 3% compound annual growth rate limitation on future electric rates compared with the utility's rates in effect prior to electing PISA. Utilities that elect the PISA provision can make qualifying deferrals of depreciation and return through December 2023, with a potential extension through December 2028 subject to MPSC approval. Except under certain circumstances, utilities that elect the PISA provision must keep base rates constant for three years following the utilities' last general rate case. KCP&L and GMO have elected the PISA provision of S.B. 564 effective as of January 1, 2019.
Regulatory Proceedings
See Note 5 to the consolidated financial statements for information regarding regulatory proceedings.
Plant Retirements
In 2017, Westar Energy announced plans to retire Unit 7 at Tecumseh Energy Center, Units 3 and 4 at Murray Gill Energy Center and Units 1 and 2 at Gordon Evans Energy Center, subject to the completion of the merger in 2018. In 2017, KCP&L and GMO also announced plans to retire KCP&L's Montrose Station and GMO's Sibley Station.
In the fourth quarter of 2018, Westar Energy, KCP&L and GMO retired these stations consistent with their previously announced plans.
Strategy
Evergy expects to continue operating its vertically integrated utilities within the currently existing regulatory frameworks. Evergy's objectives are to deliver value to shareholders through earnings and dividend growth; serve customers and communities with reliable service, clean energy and fewer and lower rate increases; and maintain a rewarding and challenging work environment for employees. Significant elements of Evergy's strategy to achieve these objectives include:
the realization of a total of approximately $550 million of potential net savings from 2018 through 2022 resulting from synergies that are expected to be created as a result of the merger;
the repurchase of approximately 60 million outstanding shares of Evergy common stock by mid-2020;
anticipated rate base investment of approximately $6 billion from 2018 through 2022;
the continued growth of Evergy's renewable energy portfolio as the Evergy Companies retire older and less efficient fossil fuel plants; and

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implementation of the rate orders received by the KCC and MPSC in 2018.
See "Cautionary Statements Regarding Certain Forward-Looking Information" and Part I, Item 1A, Risk Factors, for additional information.
Earnings Overview
The following table summarizes Evergy's net income and diluted earnings per common share (EPS).
 
2018
 
2017
 
Change
 
(millions, except per share amounts)
Net income attributable to Evergy, Inc.
$
535.8

 
$
323.9

 
$
211.9

Earnings per common share, diluted
2.50

 
2.27

 
0.23

Net income and diluted EPS increased in 2018 compared to 2017, primarily due to the inclusion of KCP&L's and GMO's earnings beginning in June 2018, higher Westar Energy retail sales driven by favorable weather and lower income tax expense, partially offset by merger-related costs and reductions of revenue for customer bill credits incurred following the close of the merger.
In addition, a higher number of diluted weighted average common shares outstanding due to the issuance of common shares to Great Plains Energy shareholders as a result of the merger diluted earnings per share $1.26 for 2018.
For additional information regarding the change in net income, refer to the Evergy Results of Operations section within this MD&A.
Impact of Recently Issued Accounting Standards
See Note 1 to the consolidated financial statements for information regarding the impact of recently issued accounting standards.
Wolf Creek Refueling Outage
Wolf Creek's most recent refueling outage began in March 2018 and the unit returned to service in May 2018. Wolf Creek's next refueling outage is planned to begin in the third quarter of 2019.
ENVIRONMENTAL MATTERS
See Note 14 to the consolidated financial statements for information regarding environmental matters.
RELATED PARTY TRANSACTIONS
See Note 16 to the consolidated financial statements for information regarding related party transactions.
CRITICAL ACCOUNTING POLICIES AND ESTIMATES
The preparation of financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect reported amounts and related disclosures. Management considers an accounting estimate to be critical if it requires assumptions to be made that were uncertain at the time the estimate was made and changes in the estimate or different estimates that could have been used could have a material impact on Evergy's results of operations and financial position. Management has identified the following accounting policies as critical to the understanding of Evergy's results of operations and financial position. Management has discussed the development and selection of these critical accounting policies with the Audit Committee of the Evergy Board.

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Pensions
Evergy incurs significant costs in providing non-contributory defined pension benefits. The costs are measured using actuarial valuations that are dependent upon numerous factors derived from actual plan experience and assumptions of future plan experience.
Pension costs are impacted by actual employee demographics (including age, life expectancies, compensation levels and employment periods), earnings on plan assets, the level of contributions made to the plan, and plan amendments. In addition, pension costs are also affected by changes in key actuarial assumptions, including anticipated rates of return on plan assets and the discount rates used in determining the projected benefit obligation and pension costs.
The assumed rate of return on plan assets was developed based on the weighted-average of long-term returns forecast for the expected portfolio mix of investments held by the plan. The assumed discount rate was selected based on the prevailing market rate of fixed income debt instruments with maturities matching the expected timing of the benefit obligation. These assumptions, updated annually at the measurement date, are based on management's best estimates and judgment; however, material changes may occur if these assumptions differ from actual events. See Note 9 to the consolidated financial statements for information regarding the assumptions used to determine benefit obligations and net costs.
The following table reflects the sensitivities associated with a 0.5% increase or a 0.5% decrease in key actuarial assumptions for Evergy's qualified pension plans. Each sensitivity reflects the impact of the change based on a change in that assumption only.
 
 
 
Impact on
Impact on
 
 
 
Projected
2019
 
Change in
Benefit
Pension
Actuarial assumption
Assumption
Obligation
Expense
 
 
 
(millions)
Discount rate
0.5
%
increase
 
$
(173.9
)