Less transparency in high voltage power line proposals
While citizen groups are asking for more transparency and local governments have passed Resolutions asking for more information regarding the proposed high voltage power line between La Crosse and Dane County, the State Senate introduced legislation last week favorable to the utility companies by fast tracking the permitting process and restricting ratepayers’ access to the application process. The ‘Decline the Lines’ citizen group, active in trying to keep the 345-kilovolt lines out of Wisconsin, met Wednesday night in Lyndon Station. Member of the group, Jane Powers said, “The new legislation, SB35, would remove a deadline and other performance markers in DNR review of the high voltage proposals. It would also expand the powers of the American Transmission Company. It now wants to buy and sell rights to transmission profits on lines they do not own.” Current law requires the Public Service Commission, within 10-days after an application for a ‘Certificate of Public Convenience’ is filed, to submit copies of the application to the clerk of each city, village, and town in which the proposed large electric generating facility or high-voltage transmission is to be located and to the main public library in each county. This bill requires instead that the PSC must submit the copies within 10-days after the PSC determines that the application is complete or after the application is considered to be complete, according to an analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau.
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