Protect the Power Marketing Administrations (PMAs) and the Federal Power Program
The Power Marketing Administrations (PMAs) are federal agencies, housed within the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), with the responsibility to market electric power, primarily from multiple-purpose water projects operated by the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The four federal PMAs – the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), the Southeastern Power Administration (SEPA), the Southwestern Power Administration (SWPA) and the Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) – are important sources of power for rural electric cooperatives who were some of the first purchasers of federal hydropower. Today, more than 600 rural electric cooperatives in 34 states are PMA power customers. For this reason, NRECA is focused on ensuring that our nation’s federal hydropower infrastructure and the PMAs remain a vital part of America’s energy backbone.
Similarly, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is a federally owned corporation that provides affordable electric power, including hydropower, to more than nine million customers in seven southeastern states. TVA receives no taxpayer funding, deriving virtually all of its revenues from sales of electricity. Today, more than 50 rural electric cooperatives distribute TVA power. For this reason, NRECA is focused on ensuring TVA’s ability to provide our cooperatives with cost-based hydroelectric power produced at their federal hydroelectric dams.
Issue: President’s FY19 Budget Requests Selling PMA & TVA Transmission Assets and Switching from a Cost-based Rate Structure to a Market-based Rate Structure
Given the long and productive history between the PMAs and TVA and their customers, NRECA was disappointed to see the Administration’s FY 2019 budget request proposal to divest the transmission assets of BPA, SWPA, WAPA, and TVA.
The Administration’s companion proposal to change the current cost-based rate structure for all four of the PMAs to a “market-based” rate structure is similarly disappointing.