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MINNESOTA POWER REAFFIRMS PLEDGE TO HELP KEEP AREA EMPLOYERS COMPETITIVE

 DULUTH, Minn., May 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Minnesota Power Chairman and President Arend Sandbulte told shareholders at the company's annual meeting in Duluth today that the company is deeply committed to keeping its Upper Minnesota electric service area nationally and globally competitive.
 "Though the short-term outlook for taconite mining companies looks reasonably stable, our taconite customers face increasing competition," Sandbulte told shareholders at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC). More than 3,000 shareholders participated in a wide range of annual meeting activities at the DECC today.
 "We are especially concerned about the proposed national energy tax, which could reverse the significant strides we have made to hold down energy costs to taconite producers and forest products companies," he said.
 "This harmful tax would raise the price of electricity alone by at least 7 percent, and threaten the competitiveness of these companies and the jobs they provide. It would raise the price of virtually every product and service we buy," Sandbulte said.
 Sandbulte also announced that the Duluth-based power supplier plans to postpone for another year the filing for a retail rate increase.
 "Last year, I told you Minnesota Power anticipated filing for a rate increase in 1993. After a thorough analysis, we decided, barring unforeseen developments, not to file this year. We'll examine our rate structure in 1994, and make a determination then. What's remarkable is that more than a decade has gone by since the last significant change in our electric rates," he said.
 Sandbulte also told shareholders that Minnesota Power's goal is to average at least 5 percent earnings growth per year between now and the year 2000.
 "I believe our growth plans will lead to superior total shareholder returns," he said.
 At the annual meeting, incumbent members of the board of directors were re-elected, one new member was added and two retired from service. Returning directors are Merrill K. Cragun, Dennis E. Evans, Orlando G. Fladmark, Mary E. Junck, Robert S. Mars Jr., Robert S. Nickoloff, Jack I. Rajala, Charles A. Russell, Mary E. Ryland, Sandbulte and Donald C. Wegmiller.
 Shareholders elected Paula F. McQueen, 46, president and treasurer-secretary of PGI Inc., a Florida residential development company and a partner in Webb, McQueen and Co., as the board's newest member.
 Retired from the board of directors are Jack F. Rowe and Clifford H. Grindy.
 After the annual meeting, the directors re-elected or reappointed the following company officers:
 Arend J. Sandbulte, chairman, president and chief executive officer;
 Robert D. Edwards, executive vice president and chief operating officer;
 Jack R. McDonald, executive vice president-finance and corporate development;
 Allen D. Harmon, group vice president-electric utility operations;
 Bert T. Phillips, group vice president-water resource operations;
 David G. Gartzke, vice president-finance and chief financial officer;
 Donnie R. Crandell, vice president-corporate development;
 Eugene G. McGillis, vice president; president of Superior Water, Light & Power;
 Gerald B. Ostroski, vice president; president of Synertec;
 Stephen D. Sherner, vice president-power sourcing and delivery;
 Geraldine R. VanTassel, vice president-corporate resource planning;
 Philip R. Halverson, general counsel and corporate secretary;
 Mark A. Schober, corporate controller;
 James K. Vizanko, corporate treasurer;
 Bruce E. Gangnon, assistant corporate controller;
 Dennis L. Hollingsworth, assistant vice president-corporate development; and
 Sean S. Macpherson, assistant secretary.
 The board also elected two new officers:
 -- Roger P. Engle, 45, vice president; general manager-central division;
 -- Kevin G. Robb, 46, vice president; president of Rainy River Energy Corp.
 Minnesota Power common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. The company provides electric services to Upper Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin, while affiliated companies are involved with paper, coal, water, wastewater treatment and environmental projects.
 -0- 5/11/93
 /CONTACT: Warren F. Hudelson of Minnesota Power, 218-723-3934/


CO: Minnesota Power ST: Minnesota IN: UTI SU:

BP -- LA039 -- 7309 05/11/93 19:25 EDT
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Date:May 11, 1993
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