Here we go again!


Once more with feeling, Xcel’s Chisago transmission project rears its ugly head.  This time, Xcel, f/k/a NSP, has violated the terms of the agreement between itself and the cities of Taylors Falls and St. Croix Falls.  It centers on the location of the end of the undergrounding near the St. Croix River.  Xcel is coming up quite a bit sooner than their specific agreement says they would, and Taylors Falls is not happy.  St. Croix Falls has joined in on their objection.  They’ve been going back and forth about this for a while, and now Taylors Falls has asked the PUC to amend the permit.

Notice of Permit Amendment Request & Comment Period

Taylors Falls & St Croix Falls Permit Amendment Request

And they’re soliciting Public Comments!  From the Notice:

The permit amendment request is scheduled to be heard at the Commission’s June 11, 2009, Agenda Meeting. The Commission is providing until June 02, 2009, for interested persons to comment on the issue. Please submit comments to be received before 4:30 p.m. on that date to:

David Birkholz, Project Manager
Office of Energy Security
85 7th Place E, Suite 500
St. Paul, MN 55101-2198

or by email:  <>

Attached to the Notice are the rules regarding amendments, and notice is to be provided to the project list.  I haven’t received it.  Hmmmmmmm… and I’ve even been to the P.O. Box lately!

Something else — on April 14, 2009, Burl Haar at the PUC signed a letter saying that Xcel had filed their Plan and they were in compliance with the permit.  That’s April 14, and attached is a memo from David Birkholz, MOES staff, dated April 10, 2009.

It looks to me like they weren’t reading my blog dated April 4, 2009:

Xcel — Undergrounding in Taylors Falls

“In compliance” my fat ass…

This was an issue in March, with correspondence dating from mid-March, and we know there was a lot of fighting going on before that.  So the MOES memo says they’re in compliance with the permit…

Hello – the agreement?  That was Exhibit 218, entered by moi into the record, offered and accepted in Transcript Vol. 1B, pages 82-83.

Deal – NSP – Taylors Falls – St. Croix Falls

This bru-ha-ha was brewing before Xcel submitted its “compliance filing,” and before Birkholz and Harr signed the “go ahead” approval.  So either David Birkholz, MOES and Burl Haar, PUC are sleeping at the switch, or Xcel made a material omission in its filings, or more likely, BOTH!  But hey, what’s an agreement between the state’s largest utility and two Minnesota cities?