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Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

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Statement: October 16, 2008 Print this page
Docket No. ER08-1419-000

Commissioner Spitzer's statement on Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

"This order approves SPP's "balanced portfolio" approach to economic upgrades. This will allow for regional, postage-stamp cost allocation for the group of economic upgrades that SPP's stakeholders see as mutually beneficial.

As I have discussed on several occasions, the financing, siting and construction of high voltage transmission is incredibly difficult. This week's technical conference on transmission was informative. There have been disappointments as well as progress. Even before the credit crisis, construction of backbone transmission was often arduous, lengthy and controversial. Citizens are reluctant to site and pay for projects even when benefits can be clearly articulated. I have learned there is no political constituency for transmission. I applaud SPP's stakeholders, particularly the Regional State Committee members, for recognizing that a mutually-agreeable solution may be the only way to get transmission built. This scenario of win-win-win may not be replicable everywhere. But SPP and its stakeholders have from whole cloth created a political constituency for transmission that is desperately needed to benefit customers.

I am pleased to support today's order."

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