Members of the American Public Power Association’s (APPA) Legislative & Resolutions Committee last month approved 11 resolutions at its annual Legislative Rally, including endorsing policies to improve the bulk electric transmission system and support for a workable federal renewable electricity standard.

With regard to new transmission infrastructure, major points of concern have been the obstacles blocking new construction such as siting and cost allocation. APPA’s resolution urges the Congress to support and improve the federal back-stop siting authority provided to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in the Energy Policy Act of 2005. It also urges FERC to provide greater guidance on cost allocation for major new transmission facilities that afford regional benefits and calls on Congress and FERC to provide greater opportunities for joint ownership of transmission by public power utilities.

The renewable electricity standard resolution adopted by the membership supports Congress’s passage of a renewable electricity standard of 15 percent, contingent upon a federal standard that is workable, allows a significant proportion of the standard to be met through energy efficiency measures, and ensures that comparable incentives are available to public power electric utilities, among other things.

Other resolutions include support for adequate operation and maintenance of federal hydropower facilities and additional authority to protect the bulk power systems from cyber attacks.

More than 600 locally elected and appointed officials, legislative experts, and APPA members attended the rally Feb. 23-26.