|Vermont Yankee supporters lining up to speak|
November 2012 Public Service Board hearing
The Public Service Board is considering the recent agreement between Vermont Yankee and the state. This agreement allows Vermont Yankee to continue to operate until the end of its current fuel cycle, without further lawsuits. I encourage readers to take action by emailing comments to the Public Service Board. Here's the link for comments;
The Agreement and the Public Service Board
The Public Service Board is now accepting comments on the agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) which was signed by Entergy and various state agencies in December 2013. This is agreement will allow Vermont Yankee to operate until the end of the year, and will also require Vermont Yankee to pay around $40 million dollars to the state and to various funds. It's a really good deal for the state. Here's a link to the agreement.
As I noted in my earlier blog post, this agreement will not take effect unless the Public Service Board grants Vermont Yankee a Certificate of Public Good substantially based upon the agreement.
It's a good deal for Entergy, also, because it means that Entergy will be able to finish up this fuel cycle in a reasonable and planned manner. With this agreement, Entergy won't have to fight the state in court in order to finish this fuel cycle. The Department of Public Service, the Vermont Attorney General, the Agency of Natural Resources have all signed the agreement also.
I encourage you to support this agreement in front of the Public Service Board.
Email the Board or Attend the Hearing
Email your opinion:
Please write your support of this agreement (or whatever your opinion might be), using this form on the Public Service Board site.
Attend the hearing:
If you live in Vermont, you might consider going to the one public hearing about this amended docket. It is Tuesday night, January 14, starting at 7 p.m.
The hearing will be held all over Vermont, in the interactive TV studios set up for this purpose. Here's the announcement. Hearings will be held in Bennington, Brattleboro, Johnson, Lyndonville, Middlebury, Montpelier, Newport, Randolph Center, Rutland, Springfield, St. Albans, White River Junction, and Williston. In other words, if you live in Vermont, there's a studio near you.
Also, attending these local studio events is sort of fun. Not completely fun, but sort of fun. You will see your neighbors, whether you agree with them or not. These studio events draw a different crowd than the almost-professional anti-nuclear group that comes to hearings in Montpelier or Brattleboro. You can also see people in the other TV studios on the video screen, as the camera moves from location to location.
I wish I could come to Tuesday's interactive TV hearing: I have been to several like this. However, just at the same time, I need to attend an event which is important to my husband.
In any rate, do email your support of the agreement, if you support it.
Suggestions for what to say
These Public Service Board dockets about Vermont Yankee have been going on for a very looong time. "Coming up to speed" on everything is probably not a realistic option. Here's the Public Service Board site for this docket, if you want to dive in.
In my opinion, you can just read the agreement itself instead of all the other material. I suggest writing something very short and simple about "being in support of the state agencies that support this agreement," and/ or "being in support of the workers at Vermont Yankee who will be able to plan their futures more effectively with this agreement."
About the workers: in the last two minutes of this video, Entergy Vice President Mike Twomey explains that an overarching goal of the negotiations was to provide twelve months of certainty for the employees of Vermont Yankee. This video was taken at the December 23, 2013 press conference announcing the agreement.
You can read more about the press conference, and see the entire conference on video, at this post by John Herrick at Vermont Digger.