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 THIS WEEK, the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (PSC) is expected to launch the public review process of the Cardinal Hickory Creek proposal to consider high-voltage transmission and non-transmission alternatives. For the first time in more than 20 years1, a proposal to build a costly and invasive expansion transmission line will face strong competition from Non-Transmission Alternatives that are widely preferred by electric customers whether they are concerned about the large expansion costs on electric bills or striving to rapidly reduce CO2 emissions that are associated with all grid-supplied power2.

SOUL OF WISCONSIN welcomes electric customers, land owners, residents, business owners, naturalists, environmentalists, energy activists, elected officials and community leaders across Wisconsin and the greater Midwest to join an expected record number of public intervenors in expressing substantial concerns and recommendations from a wide variety of unique perspectives. The positions taken by transmission builders’ can be accessed on the PSC docket3. Assessments of builders’ claims and advantages of Non-Transmission Alternatives4 can be reviewed in recent SOUL eNewsletters.

THE FIRST COMMENT OPPORTUNITY called scoping input5, has already begun. The citizen opportunity will continue through January 4, 2019 to allow multiple submissions from each commenter. The simplest way to provide input is to use a template to prompt ideas and paste the text into the PSC's on-line comment portal . Portal comments have the advantage of being officially recorded. One can also email comments to PSC staff, deliver materials in person at provided public meetings (below) and mail them. (See links to templates, sample letters, forms and complete comment packets in side bar, left).

WIDE COMMENTS ENCOURAGED.  Scoping comments are not restricted to residents directly affected by the proposed transmission line. One may comment as visitor who appreciates the many natural and economic assets of the Driftless and Mississippi River areas. All electric customers across the Midwest have right to comment as they would share billions in utility expansion costs6 over coming decades. Concerningly, these costs are billed in ways that undercut the prices utilities can afford to pay for home, business and locally produced solar power and energy efficiency improvements7. As PSC Commissioners will select one the options before them in their final decision, SOUL encourages stressing personal preference for Non Transmission Alternatives. These alternatives include larger rebates for energy efficiency improvements, modern load management and investment in home, business and local renewable energy. 

PSC SCOPING MEETINGS These meetings provide rare and important opportunities to show your concern and to Introduce yourself to PSC staff persons who will be authoring the agency’s official position statement on the proposal called the Environmental, Economic and Cultural Impacts Statement (EIS).  The purposes of the EIS is to assess harmful impacts and help citizens and decision makers understand both the transmission option and less intrusive alternatives.  If you plan to attend a scoping meeting can prepare more involved written comments in advance using a scoping packet or make an initial comment using  a form available at the meeting. One can make unlimited comments through January 4, 2019 but staff will be well into writing the EIS by mid December.  Consider making a copy for your comments to be emailed, hand delivered or mailed so they can be entered into the docket by SOUL or another party.

The PSC’s Public Scoping Meetings are:

Thursday, November 8, 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. (identical sessions) Dodger Bowl Lanes – Banquet Center 318 King St. Dodgeville

Monday, November 12, 2018 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. (identical sessions)  Madison Marriott West-Salon A 1313 John Q. Hammons Dr. Middleton

Wednesday, November 14, 2018 2:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. (identical sessions)  Grant County Fairgrounds Youth and Ag Center 916 E. Elm St. Lancaster

Contact Akanksha Craft ,CHC Docket Coordinator with questions at or (608) 267-9509

GET HELP DOCUMENTING YOUR SPECIAL CONCERNS  Four municipal governments are hosting evening sessions to constituents prepare detailed written submissions. These sessions allow persons with property, businesses, land, livestock and natural assets at risk to itemize and map sensitivities that are vulnerable to transmission line siting. The materials developed at these sessions are copied for documentation purposes and can be submitted to PSC staff at or after the PSC’s scoping meetings via mail.

Village of Montfort  and Town of Wingville (Grant County)
Wednesday, November 7, 2018 - 6:30 pm
Montfort Community Center, 102 E Park St, Montfort

Towns of Lima (Grant County) and Belmont (Lafayette County)
Wednesday, November 14, 2018 ~7:30 pm
8712 Town Hall Road, Platteville

 Contact Robin  or Susan  with questions

1  Laws that required this competitive assessment were reversed by WI lawmakers in 1998.
2  In 2016, traded power in the midwest averaged only 8% wind power compared to 73% from fossil fuel generation. New expansion transmission lines cannot be required lines to carry particular kinds of power.
3  The Application and Planning Analysis documents have the most detail,
4  No need for another unaccountable power line, Wisconsin Primed and Ready for Non-Transmission Alternatives,
6  In addition to multiple transmission lines that rely on this, questionable, cost export basis transmission builders assume billions spent on new, natural gas power plants.
7  See rate structure factors excerpt and link,
Non-Transmission Alternatives. 




          At 10:30 am at PSC Offices in Madison, WI and vis the internet, Commission staff will discuss how the interested and affected public can have their voices heard throughout PSC proceedings and outline the general process by which the Commission makes its decisions.  The commission finally agreed to provide this information and opportunity to ask questions after more than a year of requests made by nine municipal government members of the Inter-Municipal Energy Planning Committee.  Announced subjects in order include:
  • Overview of Wisconsin's Administrative Procedures Act, Wisconsin Administrative Code ch. PSC 2 and PSC Guidelines of Contested Cases
  • Review of the PSC's Electronic Records Filing System (ERF) procedures
  • How to participate as a member of the public or as party to the proceeding
  • Intervenor Compensation billing and application processes
  • A sample case - start to finish
        The presentation can be viewed on-line through a link that will be accessible at this PSC ePortal page:   Contact Pamela Cook at (608) 267-7915 or with questions about video services.

       The presentation can be attended in person at: the Public Service Commission Hearing Room,  Hills Farms State Office Building Room #S105 4822 Madison Yards Way Madison.  Directions 

      Advance registration for in person attendance is encouraged by November 5  by e-mailing Matthew2.Spencer@Wisconsin.Gov




6:30 PM 
1 Organic Way, La Farge, WI



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Harnessing Our Local
Energy Futures

Dodgeville March 2 Energy Forum 


Complete, Live Stream Recording with Discussion

Session I
Meeting Our Priorities with Household and Local Solutions

Session II
Shortfalls in Transmission Review Process and Busting Utility Myths

Session III
Confronting the Harmful Land and Economic Impacts of Transmission Expansion

Evening Speakers

Pat Raimer
Trustee, Village of Montfort, WI 

Keryn Newman
StopPATH WV, Shepherdstown, WV
Participation, Politics, and Public Opinion

Dave Clutter
Driftless Area Land Conservancy, Dodgeville, WI
Protecting the Natural Habitats and Local Economies of the Driftless Area from Unnecessary Transmission Expansion

Bill Powers
Powers Engineering, San Diego, CA
Local-Based Energy Futures and the Obstacle of Transmission Expansion



The grid to nowhere

An argument against building giant transmission lines


MARCH 1, 2018




SOUL has prepared three aides to assist comments. Stay tuned; more on the way.

(1) A complete comment packet for
landowners and residents with many assets at risk. The packet should be copied before it is mailed in. You can ask SOUL to post it to the docket.

 (2) A template  
prompting residents and visitors to cite specific concerns at the top with pre-written "boiler plate" requests at the bottom encouraging PSC staff to address key overlooked issues. 
Template text can be accessed by opening an email  or copying it from a web screen  (Select all of the text by clicking in the screen and pressing "Control+A;" copy the text by pressing "Control+C"  .Clicking in a blank text document and paste in the text with "Control+V,")  Use the same steps to paste your text into the PSC's ONLINE COMMENT PORTAL.  Your comment can be viewed on the CHC Docket.

 (3) A form for electric customers to use to specify energy spending priorities. Download the pdf form. print it, fill it in, scan it (or take a cell photo of it in bright light) and text it to Cindy Burtley at Also text it to SOUL at and we will upload a bundle of forms to the docket. 

Make initial comments Now. Additional input and comments are more useful if made before December 15. Final date is January 4, 2019.  

The PORTAL and email are recommended, The mailing address is:
WI Public Service Commission
05-CE-146 Scoping Input
 4822 Madison Yards Way
P.O. Box 7854
Madison, WI 53707-7854



TUES., October 30 
1:00 PM

Arena Town Hall
Highway 14, Arena, WI


Join representatives from the Towns of Arena, Clyde. Wyoming (Iowa Co,);  Lima,  (Grant Co.); Belmont (Lafayette Co.); Stark [Vernon Co.]; Vermont and Cross Plains (Dane Co.)  and the Village of Montfort (Grant Co.)

Topics Include:
Understanding the CHC Application, 
Up-Coming PSC Scoping Meetings & Public Participation Presentation

Membership in the Inter-Municipal Energy Planning Committee [IMEPC] is open to all county and municipal governments . Visitors are also welcome. Contact  Karen Carlock for more information.. 


PSC Release Strategic Energy Assessment 2018-2024
Many people desiring the agency to more faithfully represent ratepayer priorities in Wisconsin energy policy and decision-making contributed comments about the PSC's DRAFT Final Strategic Energy Assessment  this summer and it shows!  The Final SEA for 2018-2024. It is now available for download here.  It contains considerably more, in depth analysis of how investment in new power plants and transmission lines has caused our rates and fixed fees to soar to recover the cost on long term, high interest debt.

Pick out a favorite section and make an appointment with a state legislator to go over the significances and to discuss how laws can be improved to avoid the continuation of the excessive spending that is undercutting the competitiveness of Wisconsin businesses and sending dollars to Wall Street that should be going to our communities.

Are You Fully Exploiting the Powers of your Household?

Discover clever, low-cost ways to become a 21st Century Load Defector to save money, slash emissions and live with cleaner conscience. 

 If your household electric bill is greater than 700 kilowatt hours, per month, it's likely you can make significant improvements. Learn more about the energy and emission savings tips and email SOUL for your personalized, online tracking sheet to record your monthly progress. See CONTEST  tor households tracking use frm  May 2017 to May 2018. .

20th Century Utility Assumptions Failing Ratepayers in 21st Century

Article by  David Roberts explaining causes for skyrocketing cost increases and unwitting liabilities utilities are bringing upon electric customers as they refuse to embrace cost-effective solutions. Companion article  by Roberts' provides an overview of New York State's Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) program in which the NY PSC ordered utilities to apply $200,000 towards energy efficiency, local power and load management instead of spending $1 billion upgrading an older substation. See also Sept 2016 progress report on the initiative.

LIFETIME MEMBERSHIP to support ratepayer energy investment priorities is only $5!  Membership numbers are especially important when SOUL intervenes in utility cases and seeks funding for engineers and other experts.  Consider two or more memberships for your family. Donations above the $5 fee are tax deductible. Join online here or mail a check to SOUL of Wisconsin, PO Box 146, La Farge, WI 54639 




See map on pdf p. 41 of the PSC's newly released Strategic Energy Assessment and more information here (pdf p.28) Now is the time to protect your community with adoption of resolutions and informing your elected local and state officials. Contact the Energy Planning and Information Committee of the Town of Stark for more information and assistance.
Copyright © 2018 Wisconsin Energy Awareness Initiative, All rights reserved.

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