Hogan, Markell make case against Artificial Island power line plan

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Govs. Jack  Markell (D-DE) and Larry Hogan (R-MD)   continued to urge the  Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to change power grid manager PJM’s proposal that would require residents of the two states to pick up the tab for a power stability project that would benefit other areas of the region.

FERC has also announced that it will study whether to rehear  its earlier decision  on the Artificial Island project that would build a power line to Delaware. Artificial Island is the site of  the Salem and Hope Creek nuclear power plants. The stability of power coming out of the plants has been a long-running problem.

Hogan announced that his administration would join in forcefully opposing the plan, sending a letter to FERC members echoing arguments made by Markell and the two states’ Public Service Commissions.

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During remarks to members of the media, the two governors urged FERC to act swiftly.

FERC initially approved the cost allocation for a transmission line being built as part of PJM’s Artificial Island project, despite evidence showing that Delmarva energy consumers would bear an overwhelming amount of the cost and receive only about ten percent of the benefits.

However, last week, the FERC agreed to consider a rehearing of the matter as requested by Markell, as well as the Delaware and Maryland PSCs.

“It’s imperative that FERC resolve this issue without delay and before the project moves too far along,” said Markell. “Planning for construction is already underway and uncertainty about electricity costs can impact economic development. I thank Governor Hogan for his commitment to join this fight against an unjust and irresponsible cost distribution that will raise electric bills of Delaware and Maryland consumers and businesses, unfairly forcing them to bear a large burden for this project.”

“Today, I am announcing that our administration is joining together with Governor Markell in strong opposition to this ruling, which would disproportionately cost Maryland and Delaware residents hundreds of millions of dollars for power they are not receiving,” said Hogan. “We have expressed our disappointment, frustration, and opposition to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission this week and we have let the agency know that we are going to use every tool at our disposal to reverse this regrettable and improper decision.”

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