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Electrifying debate

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Print Headline: Irate in Eureka

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  • GiveUsLiberty
    July 1, 2014 at 9:41 a.m.

    Good column Mike. This project must be stopped!

  • LContreras
    July 1, 2014 at 2:51 p.m.

    Eureka Springs has been under the gun since April 3, 2013 doing all we can do to keep our electric costs down and preserve the quality of life in the Ozarks. Fifteen months later, we have many questions and no answers. Approving a 50 mile line from point to point with no information on the next segment only because SPP has 345 kV vision, should be denied by APSC with an order to have SWEPCO refund legal expenses for all interveners.

    SPP visions and illusions are real threats for our community. Of course we are irate, and determined to stop SWEPCO.

    We are also grateful for the opportunity to meet with Senator Bryan King and State Representative Bob Ballinger, and hear them clearly say they oppose all SWEPCO routes, in solidarity with the community.

    It takes courage and leadership to support our community. Where are the other public representatives that were not at the Forum? When will we hear from them? If not, why not?

    We will remember those who came and we will not forget others afraid to oppose AEP.

  • Nodmcm
    July 1, 2014 at 3:24 p.m.

    About the only thing stopped in Northwest Arkansas was the damming of the Buffalo River. That was back in the 1970s, when there were still some liberals left over from the anti-Vietnam protests living in Northwest Arkansas. I recall also perhaps a solid waste dump on top of a mountain that was opposed vehemently. Now, virtually all of the legislators are stalwart Republicans and put the interests of the electrical utility companies (and all big businesses) first and far ahead of the will of the "little people" (Democrats are supposed to represent the "little people", but the Democrats are all gone). So people are totally dreaming if they think these "big business" Republicans are going to stop a utility like SWEPCO from doing whatever it wants to do. Remember Republican Congressman Tim Griffin making apologies for Exxon during the spill at Mayflower? There are consequences to elections, and one consequence of electing Republicans is to support, entirely and without reservation, Big Business and its goals and desires. Welcome to a Red State!

  • LContreras
    July 1, 2014 at 3:32 p.m.

    AEP transmission line projects are long struggles that cause permanent harm to communities opposing 19th century technology and billions of dollars in ratepayer debt. Here is a prime example: “Completion of the Wyoming-Jacksons Ferry line is a tremendous accomplishment for the electric utility industry, AEP and its customers,” said Michael G. Morris, AEP chairman, president and chief executive officer. “This project illustrates that transmission lines can be constructed in ways that strike a balance between the environment and the nation’s growing need for electricity"

    Are they kidding? Is this a tremendous AEP accomplishment? Over 16 years to get approval for a highly contested, 90 mile 765 kV transmission line? With unlimited budget, AEP can pay lawyers and experts for as long as it takes. Small communities have better things to do, families to care for, and limited funds. I don’t know the details of this line, but if I had to guess the people traversed by this line would not consider this a success.

    Fortunately, recent AEP projects like the Potomac-Appalachian-Transmission-Highline (PATH), a 765 kV line proposed in 2008. PATH was abandoned in 2012 when it was clear the project was not needed, leaving the community with an enormous legal bill and four years of grass roots efforts. We look forward to the day SWEPCO is not on our mind, no wires in the sky, no legal bills, and time to enjoy life. We will stop SWEPCO; it will be a tremendous accomplishment. Come to Eureka Springs, all are invited.

  • LContreras
    July 1, 2014 at 3:38 p.m.

    AEP does not name their projects anymore. Instead, they get approval for one segment at a time, from point to point, to make it easy to claim the line is needed for reliability. It is never capacity, better service, lower cost; reliability with no metrics and old data is what AEP uses to sell HVAC lines.

    ARMO is the name on the street for the 345 kV loop to wheel Arkansas electrons to Springfield Missouri. The first 14 mile segment is under construction; the second segment is the 50 mile to Kings River, not the end of the line, but SWEPCO will not tell anyone their true intentions. Is wheeling legal? Making profits at no cost, no risk, and no value added in another state? Missouri has plenty of electrical power and plans for expansion. Why would we pay for the line only to give AEP an unfair advantage? How is this different from illegal sales of cigarettes across state lines? Coal-electrons and cancer-sticks are both deadly. Can someone explain?

  • FreeSpiritMan
    July 1, 2014 at 7:53 p.m.

    Nodmcm .......... Excellent commentary. Unfortunately the state may get redder. The rural snake handlers have been doing their job as ordained by their head master.

  • LContreras
    July 10, 2014 at 10:49 a.m.

    Here is what people in NWA are saying:

    1. I am not afraid...I am concerned for the future generations of our beautiful Arkansas. If we as citizens do not stop the over indulgence of large corporations and our over-extended government, then we stand to loose everything including our God given rights to enjoy the bounty of beauty that he painted upon the canvas of the world. I am just sick of the lack of concern and caring and the greed for power and money.

    2. We are all trying to work for a living and it should be a crime that we have to worry about this every day, and take time out of our schedules to fight a for-profit company that is trying to take our land from us. This transcends politics. There will be people from all sorts of political stripes that will be working together on this. We just all have to stick together on this and we WILL prevail.

    3. There are a million other things that I am sure everyone here would rather be doing. I own a farm and have two small businesses, but I have to waste my time fighting people who have been looking to use my land since 2009, but I didn't even know we were in the cross hairs until earlier this year. It is atrocious!

    These are just a few examples, I could list 1,000 more. Think for a minute how much time SWEPCO has taken from our lives, 16 months, hundreds of thousands of people, many hours every day. SWEPCO has stolen invaluable time that is gone forever. Are we angry? You bet. Are we going to let them build a line just to keep AEP shareholders happy? No Way. The message is clear: we want SWEPCO out of our lives and out of Arkansas.

    What people say matters; people elect public officials with the expectation they will stand up when the time come. We are making a list and checking it twice. So far, most representatives are not on the list. We have long memories. A two year old girl standing in front of the SWEPCO bulldozers is not going to stop the line. There will be many others ahead of her.

    APSC Commissioners have the power to end this madness, today.

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