Linkages


Call me a conspiracy nut — but I couldn’t help connect the dots as I wrote these different radio-news reports over the last eight days…

May 23: Nevada lawmakers endorsed NV Energy’s plan to retire its coal-fired plants and pave the way for the state’s biggest electrical utility to transition to more renewable sources. After several revisions, SB 123 was approved  Wednesday by the Senate and now goes to the Assembly.  Under the bill, NV Energy will close Reid-Gardner in southern Nevada by 2017 and divest 800 megawatts of coal by 2019. The bill has the support of Governor Sandoval and Senator Harry Reid.

May 24: The findings of a new Nevada Public Research Institute study of Senate Bill 123 says the proposal imposes big, new hidden cost on energy users. It shows NV Energy’s proposed “NVision” plan, will increase the cost of electricity, doesn’t cap rate hikes caused by increases in natural gas prices and forces ratepayers to pay NV Energy for stockpiles of coal it no longer wants to use.

May 28: NV Energy wants to get rid of its coal power plants and build a 350 megawatt plant using renewable energy sources. After passing the Senate, SB 123 received its first hearing in the Assembly Monday. However the Nevada Public Research Institute says the plan will increase energy costs between 11 and 50 percent over the next decade.

May 30: NV Energy and Mid American Energy Holdings Co. says a company headed by billionaire Warren Buffett has agreed to buy NV Energy for about $10 billion, including stocks and other holding. NV Energy CEO Michael Yackira says the power company will continue to operate in Nevada. The sale of NV Energy will need state and federal approval.

May 31: The news that NV Energy is being sold is being greeted with mixed reactions. Senator Harry Reid says the sale will be good for the state and the company. But the proposed sale is raising concerns with consumer groups, lawmakers and Nevada’s Public Utilities Commission who think it may mean higher rates for customers. The company’s stock jumped 23-percent Thursday following news of the impending sale.

Finally, as a foot-note, I also reported: Reid does not intend on leaving Washington any time soon. He says he plans to run again in 2016. Reid was first elected to congress in 1986.

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