NW Energy Caucus Leaders Call on Administration to Withdraw Rate Raising Plan
Hastings, DeFazio, Walden Signal Bipartisan Opposition to "Ill-Conceived" Plan for BPA
WASHINGTON, DC - Congressmen Doc Hastings (R-Wash.), Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) and Greg Walden (R-Ore.), co-chairs of the Northwest Energy Caucus, wasted no time in calling on the Administration to withdraw a provision in its budget proposal for next year that would increase power rates in the Pacific Northwest by 10 percent or more.
"Pacific Northwest families, farms and job-creating businesses can ill-afford another rate increase at this time," the lawmakers said.
Under the budget proposal submitted to Congress today, a portion of the Bonneville Power Administration's future revenues would be captured and used to accelerate repayment of its federal debt rather than to reduce Northwest power rates.
In a letter sent today, Hastings, DeFazio and Walden asked the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to "suspend the pursuit of this ill-conceived plan which would negatively impact the Northwest economy." The lawmakers went on to express disappointment at the lack of consultation with the Northwest congressional delegation and noted BPA's long history of repaying their debt on time or ahead of schedule.
"Under this direction, millions of dollars will be pulled out of our region's economy to pay a federal debt obligation that is already ahead of schedule for repayment," they said in the letter.