Update as of 10/31/16
Of the five FERC Commissioners, two have left the commission in Washington and one has recused them self from our case. The two vacancies will not be filled until after the new President makes two appointments who then have to be confirmed by the Senate. Our attorneys in Washington are predicting that to happen at the end of the first quarter of 2017. Until then, we are on hold for any SSR costs.
The Michigan Senate is expected to vote on the energy legislation package during the lame duck session. The ore mine exemption language is still in the bill at the insistence of the Governor’s administration. House and Senate members representing our area agree with Cloverland that this exemption needs to be removed, but are not able to work around the Governor’s office. The mine signed a 20-year deal to take electricity from the Presque Isle Power Plant until 2020 when it is supposed to close and then the new gas-fired power plant after that. Even with a 20-year contract, the Governor’s office says the ore mine exemption will not be removed. Cloverland will continue to work with our House members to get this language removed.
Update as of 9/30/16
In July 2016, an administrative law judge issued his initial decision that Wisconsin Electric’s and MISO’s numbers for the 2014 to 2015 System Support Resource (SSR) costs for the Presque Isle Power Plant were unsupportable and should be reduced. His decision along with many briefs were filed at FERC in August. At this time, Cloverland is on hold until FERC issues its final decision expected later this year or the first of 2017. Until then, FERC has instructed MISO not to invoice Cloverland for the SSR costs.
The Senate still has not voted on the much-debated energy legislation package presented in 2015. Cloverland is still requesting the one sentence ore mine exemption be removed from the bill before it is approved. If not, Cloverland members are at risk to bear a portion of the financial burden for the proposed gas-fired generation facility in Marquette scheduled for 2019.