SOURCE: Westar Energy, Inc.

Westar Energy, Inc.

February 25, 2009 16:20 ET

Westar Energy Increases Dividend

New Quarterly Dividend of 30 Cents per Share Reflects a 3.4% Increase

TOPEKA, KS--(Marketwire - February 25, 2009) - The Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE: WR) Board of Directors today declared a quarterly dividend of 30 cents per share payable April 1, 2009 on the company's common stock. The new dividend is 3.4 percent higher than the company's previous quarterly dividend of 29 cents per share, and results in an indicated annual rate of $1.20 per share.

"We recognize the importance of our dividend as a component of total shareholder return," said Bill Moore, president and chief executive officer. "Westar is committed both to returning value to our shareholders and providing safe, reliable electric energy to our customers at a reasonable price. This increase is consistent with our business plan, dividend payout guidelines and business expectations."

The board also declared regular quarterly dividends on the company's 4.25 percent, 4.5 percent and 5 percent series preferred stocks payable April 1, 2009.

The dividends are payable to shareholders of record as of March 9, 2009.

Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE: WR) is the largest electric utility in Kansas, providing electric service to about 679,000 customers in the state. Westar Energy has about 6.500 megawatts of electric generation capacity and operates and coordinates more than 35,000 miles of electric distribution and transmission lines.

For more information about Westar Energy, visit us on the Internet at http://www.WestarEnergy.com.