The Net #5
Kansas Legislative Network News
February 13, 2009
Sierra Club Kansas Chapter
5001 Rock Creek Lane, Mission, KS 66205
Phone: 913-236-9161; cell: 913-687-2405;
Holcomb and Valentines
If you think you are tired of reading about Holcomb you better believe I am tired of writing about it. Tomorrow is Valentines Day so I thought I would try a little “Roses are red” type prose. I ain’t very good at this so don’t laugh too hard.
Holcomb spews black
265 and 2014 are nuts
It’s time to ACT
No if, ands or butts
That’s far from perfect but it sums things up pretty well.
For the past 4 KLNs I have presented House bills that I indicated might be combined at some point into a comprehensive energy plan of some kind. The House Utilities Committee did just that all last week. The result was Substitute for HB 2014.
It does have the good, the bad and the ugly. Of course the ugly is the part where Sunflower gets to have its permit reconsidered and the Sec. of KDHE’s authority is altered to the point he will have to issue it or go to court. This was written more broadly this year so the cattle industry wanted the bill for regulations that affect them too.
As I write this, Substitute for HB 2014 is not available (though the bill it used to be before something was substituted is) By the time you get this it should be available on line at the legislative website: http://www.kslegislature.org/legsrv-legisportal/index.do
The Senate did not want to be left out so they finally threw their version of a comprehensive energy plan into the Senate Utilities Committee via the Ways and Means Committee on Thursday. It is SB 265. It was not made available until Friday (2/13).
265 will have hearings Wednesday (1:00 pm), Thursday (7:30 am) and Friday (7:30 am) of next week and is not expected to move further until after turn around next weekend.
At this point 265 is much simpler than 2014 but I expect this to change. 265, besides altering Sec. Bremby’s authority has energy efficiency for government buildings, a net metering provision paying 150% of avoided costs, an RPS and provisions for St. Cloud and Dodge City Community Colleges to have a form of net metering. This bill is available on line at the legislative web site.
Turn around day is the day bills passed in the House are sent to the Senate for consideration and bills passed in the Senate are given to the House for the same reason. Bills not passed by either chamber by this time become inactive till next year’s session. Bill consideration has a 2-year cycle that coincides with the term of State Representatives.
At the end of the 2 years, all bills not passed are dead and bill numbers are re-assigned for the new cycle. Of course there are many ways that inactive bills can come alive. Amending a dead bill into a live bill is not unusual.
Some Stuff in Substitute for HB 2014
As I said previously, the final version of 2014 is not yet available on line. Many amendments were amended later. The process was often confusing. The ranking Democrat, Annie Kuether challenged the process dictated by Chairman Holmes. My descriptions below are intended to allow you to look for them in the bill if you are interested when the bill is made available.
I have already indicated that the authority of KDHE (was 2182) was altered and that the Sunflower permit could be reconsidered it Sunflower wants. 2014 also allows electric coops including, Sunflower, to remove themselves from the authority of KDHE (2035).
2014 has a net metering and parallel generation sections. Customer generators will have a choice between receiving a payment for excess generation at 150% of avoided cost in parallel generation sections. Or they can have a single meter net metering where at the end of the month excess generation is given to the utility. Legislators continue to complain that customer generators aren’t paying their fair share of electric infrastructure so giving back excess is a way to pay for this.
There is an RPS that has been drastically whittled down. The energy to base the RPS was the topic of much discussion. Should capacity, actual electricity generated or name plate be used. I am waiting to see what the final bill really says though I am certain the language uses the base that results in the least renewable energy needed. However, other whittling included energy efficiency efforts counting as 25% of the RPS and 1 kw of renewable energy produced in the state counting as 1.25 kw. As a result, this RPS will require only minimal renewable energy production.
This RPS came from several sources and was crafted as the Utilities Committee progressed. Rep. Josh Svaty attempted amendments to keep a real RPS in place but motions failed.
There is also an Energy Resources Committee (2639), energy efficiency for state buildings (2015), compressed air rules and regulations (2224), help for municipal and coop utilities to by electricity (2225), KCC development of fees for rules and regs for KETA (the original 2014) and various time lines for hearings and decision making.
If there is supposed to be lipstick on this pig it is badly smudged. Substitute for HB 2014 was passed on a nearly partisan vote, as were several amendments. Republicans voted for this bill and Democrats against. Republican Rep. Moxley voted against this bill too but I am not sure why since he voted for almost everything in it.
Sorry about the poem. It isn’t as bad as the Holcomb bills.
Now is the time to let your State Representative and State Senator know where you stand. Tell them to vote NO on Substitute for HB 2014 in the House and NO on SB 265 in the Senate. Please be ready for future votes, too.
Sierra Club Kansas Chapter