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    The town of Carlton, Wisconsin, is divided when it comes to how severely the closure of one power plant will affect area electricity rates, with state utilities contending the impact will be minimal and advocacy groups claiming it could lead to serious rate hikes.

    According to Fox affiliate 11 News, Wisconsin Public Service and Wisconsin Power and Light both purchase power from the inoperable Kewaunee nuclear power plant, but they say its offline status will not affect rates.

    "We've been looking at the market, very aggressively over the past two or three years. We obviously [have] a portfolio in mind," said Charlie Severance with Wisconsin Public Service. "We have plans to be able to accommodate the loss of that contract in December 2013."

    However, the Citizens Utility Board of Wisconsin is calling malarkey, saying that the closure of the plant could mean serious long-term rate hikes.

    "There's no easy way for the public or the state's Public Service Commission to evaluate the impact that type of activity has on our future ability to get electricity," said CUB Executive Director Charlie Higley.

    There is currently a push in Wisconsin to bring the potential of a deregulated energy market back onto the table, with many saying such a market could help residents find the best electricity rates.