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Perry Promises To Not Sell Off BPA Assets Without Congressional Approval


Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, McNary Dam operations manager Dave Coleman and Rep. Greg Walden, R-Hood River, tour the McNary Dam in August 2017.

Secretary of Energy Rick Perry, McNary Dam operations manager Dave Coleman and Rep. Greg Walden, R-Hood River, tour the McNary Dam in August 2017.

E.J. Harris/East Oregonian

Cheap electricity has helped bring industrial development to the Pacific Northwest, but utility companies fear decisions regarding the Bonneville Power Administration will increase rates.

Some good news came Thursday, when Energy Secretary Rick Perry told Rep. Greg Walden that his department will not move to sell off the Bonneville Power Administration’s assets without going through Congress.

The idea to privatize BPA, which provides wholesale power to electric utilities across the Pacific Northwest, was proposed by the Donald Trump administration last summer. It received strong pushback from Oregon lawmakers.

“It is the one idea — bad idea — that unites all of us in the Northwest,” Walden told Perry, according to a video of Thursday’s hearing before the Congressional Subcommittee on Energy in Washington, D.C. “I’m afraid this move could do nothing but harm my constituents, drive up electricity costs, and hurt consumers across the region.”

Read the whole story at the East Oregonian.

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