Statement from Sue Kelly, President and CEO
The American Public Power Association is disappointed to see that President Trump’s report on government reorganization proposes to divest the transmission assets held by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and three of the Power Marketing Administrations (PMAs): Southwestern Power Administration, Western Area Power Administration, and Bonneville Power Administration. President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2018 and 2019 budget requests contained the same proposal, both of which were wisely and widely rejected by a broad coalition of members of the House and Senate. The Association will continue to adamantly oppose any effort by the federal government to privatize TVA and PMA assets that have been paid for by electricity customers.
The PMAs provide millions of Americans served by not-for-profit public power and rural electric cooperative utilities with cost-based hydroelectric power produced at federal dams. PMA rates are set to cover all generation and transmission costs, as well as repayment, with interest, of the federal investment in these hydropower projects. None of the costs are borne by taxpayers. Similarly, TVA provides affordable electric power to more than nine million people in seven states at no cost to taxpayers.
Selling TVA and PMA transmission assets and/or increasing PMA rates by changing the current cost-based structure would threaten the ability of the PMAs to provide reliable, cost-based power to the approximately 1,200 public power systems and rural electric cooperatives in 33 states and the millions of customers they serve. The Association urges Congress to reject these misguided proposals.