The MN Hampton-Roch-LaX report?

Filed under:Uncategorized — posted by admin on February 4, 2012 @ 9:48 am


It’s February now.  It seems Administrative Law Judge Kathleen Sheehy is M-I-A.  The hearing for the CapX 2020 Hampton-Rochester-LaCrosse line ended in June, public hearings were the week of June 13th, and evidentiary hearings the week of June 20th, Comments due by June 29, 2011 and record closed.  Briefs were filed in October.   Ummmmmmm, that was a long time ago!  We’re going on four months now.  We got the final exhibit list a month ago yesterday, which usually means the ALJ recommendation is imminent.  Nope, guess not!

This tells me something is up…

When I think of the problem in Wisconsin, that “none of the nine routes considered in this EIS are viable alternatives,” and because Minnesota knows what a problem that was on the Brookings line, DOT easements making the LeSueur route not a viable, legal alternative, it makes me wonder if Minnesota is waiting for that to be made clear and then Minnesota doesn’t have to decide.

On the other hand, maybe the Recommendation came out and it went into that Black Hole at MOES where the Comments go?


IC & FEIS – Long week in transmission land

Filed under:Uncategorized — posted by admin on @ 9:09 am

Finally, the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin has funded, albeit partially, Citizens Energy Task Force.

PSC Order – CETF Intervenor Compensation

Note Walker’s appointee Ellen Nowak dissents.  CETF’s work is duplicative.  ???  No other party is proposing an appraiser as witness.  And as far as “need” goes, Citizens Utility Board represents ratepayers which is very different from landowner interests, and you haven’t heard CUB say NO!  And “duplicative of the work being done by Commission staff?”  Give me a break…

None of the other intervenors put in any comments on the DEIS, NONE!

And then there’s the Final Environmental Impact Statement.  It’s out.  There’s not a simple way to get it online:

Go to

Scroll down to “search dockets” and plug in docket 05-CE-136

Scroll down and pick out the parts of the Final Environmental Impact Statement

If you need a hard copy, I think the go-to guy is Jim Lepinski:


Hearings are coming up in March, just a month away…

March 13, 2012 at 1p and 6p
Alma American Legion
501 North Main Street
Alma, Wisconsin
March 14, 2012 at 1p and 6p
Centerville Community Center
W24854 State Road 54/93
Centerville, WI

Pay particular attention to p. 277:

WisDOT’s state inability to issue permits for paralleling the GRRNSB or release scenic easements along it could have a severe impact on the viability of several of the proposed routes and the transmission application.  If WisDOT cannot (as it states in its December 23, 2011, comments on the draft EIS) issue permits and release scenic easement rights for the project along the GRRNSB in Segments 2A through 2D, 2O by the Trempealeau River, and/or8A through 8C, 9, and 18H, and if realignments proposed by the applicants in their December 23, 2011, Supplemental Comments on the draft EIS do not resolve this problem, then none of the nine routes considered in this EIS are viable alternatives.

That’s a pretty important statement.  And it’s Brookings LeSueur River Crossing all over again, where Xcel chose its “Preferred” route over DOT scenic easements and it’s not possible to use that route.  Shouldn’t they know that ahead of time?  They’re the pros!  Or did they know it and try to ram their way through anyway?  And shouldn’t MOES have picked that up, shouldn’t that have been prominent in the EIS?  But noooo, the comments were hidden until the public hearings!  So we end up with an initial PUC routing decision and Minnesota River crossing that won’t work legally, and we end up with a remand.  What a waste of our time and efforts, a serious problem for affected landowners who didn’t get notice.

Let’s pay a little attention to recent history, folks.

image: detail of installation by Bronwyn Lace