Longstanding problems at the Public Utilities Commission, no need to look further than the Power Plant Siting Act Annual Hearing dockets to get the specifics:

Thursday – Annual Power Plant Siting Act Hearing

And it seems the PUC is now trying to get a handle on it!  In a transmission docket, where Xcel requested “alternative review” which is short, 6 months, with only cursory environmental review (see Minn. Stat. 216E.04, subd.2(3)).

Staff Briefing Papers – 11-948

The main recommendations of the Staff Briefing Papers are these doozies:


But wait… there’s more!


In light of the way Xcel has been inserting new routes at the tail end of the process, and noting that Commerce has been allowing that despite objections from parties and landowners alike, that paragraph just makes my day!  Look at the “Myrick Route” in the CapX Brookings-Hampton route docket, added during the evidentiary hearing after all but the New Prague “blizzard make-up” hearings were held?


That trick was repeated in the CapX Hampton-LaCrosse route docket, where a route was added near Cannon Falls when, as Applicants admit, their Preferred route was not feasible, so at the last minute, the day before the public hearings were to begin, or the day of, depending on which document you’re referencing, they sent notice to landowners that they may be affected, and called them too!  This came out at the Cannon Falls hearing, at which point I quickly filed a Motion to extend the deadline to intervene for the people who didn’t get notice until then, oh well, that went over like a lead balloon…  Here’s the route they proposed:


So we’ll see what these changes really mean…

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