Recent rate hikes in Connecticut's electricity market have generated a lot of discussion around the electric restructuring law passed by the General Assembly in 1998. Some of that discussion has been in the media. For a couple of different perspectives, see Chris Keating's storyÂ in Sunday's Hartford Courant and this opinion pieceÂ by Chris Powell in last night's Journal Inquirer.
Chris Powell does a fine job making several of the points I tried to make in the interview with the Courant. If restructuring hasn't worked it's partially because of decisions made by the General Assembly--like adopting a cap on rates that helped stifle competition--and by the state's inability to provide the infrastructure necessary to support a competitive marketplace.
But the issue really is, where do we go from here? CBIA's energy agenda focuses on a couple of key points--build the necessary generation and transmission infrastructure, and support conservation and alternative energy sources. Earlier today House Minority Leader Larry Cafero made a good suggestion. He said that the legislature should go ahead and adopt those things that are agreed to by most people, such as conservationÂ and efficiency tax exemptions, expedited siting of distributed energy resources and energy assistance programs.
I can't help but comment on Sen. Prague's tirade in the above-mentioned Courant story. She really is getting tiresome in her rants against CBIA. But since we take the high road here, suffice it to say that we never threaten legislators in any way. If she disagrees with us (which she always does) fine, but wrongly disparaging the way we conduct business is crossing over the line.