Underground Xcel’s Hiawatha Project transmission.  That’s BIG, it’s good news, except for one thing — “Who pays?” is still a question:

ALJ Heydinger’s Recommendation for Xcel’s Hiawatha Transmission Project

Problem is, cost allocation isn’t dealt with specifically, only explained, so no recommendation regarding that.


If the PUC went ahead, would it be spread across the Metro area, the full Xcel rate base, or???

For the SE Metro, and for the Chisago Transmission Project, if they cities would have agreed to shoulder the cost, undergrounding was no problem.  But that’s not feasible for a city to pay.  So now what?  Will the PUC actually order undergrounding, with a broad rate base recovery?


MAPP then… and MAPP now:


Good news on the Mid-Atlantic Power Pathway front — another continuance granted!

October 5, 2010 Order Granting Continuance

This Order gives the parties until November 30, 2010 to report in on whether a Status Conference is necessary.

Mid-Atlantic Power Pathway is a 500kV transmission line proposed for Maryland and Delaware (the New Jersey part has gone the way of the brontosaurus.  Apparently there’s a delay in the Application (well of course, delay’s appropriate and expected when something isn’t needed!).   A little birdie told me that Pepco Holdings (PHI) will probably file their updated Application for the Maryland CPCN in November, if PJM gets their act together.  The part in Maryland is a revised southern Maryland segment, the undergrounded Bay crossing and the eastern shore to the Delaware state line.

A significant part of this line will be undergrounded.


(really, that’s their “site plan” — how informative!!)

It’s in the news, Concerned River Valley Citizens’ suit against LS Power, Lent Township and Chisago County had a hearing last week.   Short version:

Judge Hoffman said he wanted to be armed with sufficient information to make a decision. He asked for just one thing – a written transcript of the legislative discussion that preceded the adoption of the legislation regarding the tax exemption in 2009, specifically subdivision 92 pertaining to the obtaining of the development agreement.

He asked the attorneys to write a letter to the court when it is provided and then he will make his decision.

The judge believed this information is important and he can’t be obligated to make a decision until he knows what the legislation said about approval of a development agreement “before” the start of construction.

Most committee meetings now are available online, and the legislative library provides tapes.  One problem is that the legislative intent is rarely conveyed in the committee meetings, and all the behind the scenes doings aren’t going to see the light of day.

The statutory section at issue – Minn. Stat. 272.02, Subd. 92.

Here’s the Summons and Complaint from last June:

CRVC -Summons and Complaint

For more info, go to www.stopsunriseriverplant.com

From ECM Post Review:

Judge asks for one thing in power plant civil case

Wednesday, 06 October 2010

By MaryHelen Swanson

In courtroom 202, Tenth Judicial District Judge John C. Hoffman heard from attorney Douglas Sauter of Barna, Guzy & Steffen, Ltd., representing the CRVC and Carlson, and three attorneys representing Chisago County, Lent Township and LS Power (Sunrise River Energy) respectively.

The CRVC and Carlson have filed a civil lawsuit against the three entities named above in connection with the siting of an electric generating power plant in Lent Township.

The attorney for Chisago County, separately retained, explained to the judge the proposal by LS Power and the coalition’s argument that there is no pre-emption to county zoning ordinance. The county’s attorney says there is pre-emption.

The attorney showed the judge the legislation enacted in 2009 that required a development agreement and host agreement before tax exempt status is granted.

The attorney said in his opinion, the county, as well as Lent Township, did nothing wrong, it was what they needed to do.

The CRVC and attorney believe that the cart has been put before the horse and argues that the sequence of events is wrong.

Attorney Sauter provided Judge Hoffman with background on the proposal, which has LS Power constructing a 780 MW natural gas-fired electric generating plant on 40 acres in Lent Township, property adjacent to the substation off County Road 14.

Giving details of the LS Power proposed project, Sauter told the judge the presence of such a large plant would destroy the nature of the community and Carlson’s ability to sell high end lots in his nearby development.

The process, he stressed, is important.

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