Southwest Power Pool Integration of Mountain West Transmission Group Moves Forward

On March 13, the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) approved a set of terms and conditions that will govern the Mountain West Transmission Group’s pending membership in SPP. Specifically, 18 policies were adopted addressing terms of SPP membership in areas including: governance; DC ties between the systems; transmission planning and resource adequacy; and rates and revenue. …

Proposed Energy Modernization Plan: Tribes and Clean Energy Proponents Can Likely Benefit

On January 30, 2018, Arizona Corporation Commissioner Andy Tobin proposed a new “Energy Modernization Plan” for the state of Arizona.  The proposed plan seeks to implement a comprehensive approach to develop  clean energy resources for Arizona’s electricity infrastructure.  Even though Tribes are not mentioned in the plan, Tribes and clean energy proponents should consider the …

Tribal Clean Energy Development: 2017 Changes and 2018 Opportunities

Executive Orders and Agency Changes to Watch During 2017 there were several key sets of action – at the federal, state, local, and industry levels –that have, or will, directly impact Indian clean energy development opportunities. Some of these actions will benefit Indian tribes seeking to develop clean energy resources or becoming more energy self-sufficient.  …

Supreme Court Recently Issued Opinion That Will Impact Clean Water Act Litigation

The United States Supreme Court recently issued a unanimous opinion on a procedural matter that will have a significant impact on future Clean Water Act litigation.  In National Association of Manufacturers v. Department of Defense, issued on January 22, 2018, the Court determined that challenges to the Waters of the United States Rule must be …

New Mexico Reviews the Impact of 2017 Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on Regulated Utilities

On Wednesday, January 24, 2018, the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (PRC) issued an “Order Commencing Review of the Effects of the Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA) on Regulated New Mexico Utilities.”  The Commission recognizes that the TCJA may have a major effect on the earnings and overall financial condition of …

Multiple Parties Enter Rate Case Negotiations to Benefit New Mexico Utility Customers

A proposed reduction of $4.4 million to Public Service Company of New Mexico’s capital investment requirement combined with savings from the recently enacted tax legislation may still yield a fee increase for consumers of approximately 2% spread over two years. In response to the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (PRC) Revised Order Partially Adopting Certification …

Will New Mexico Utility Customers Be First in Country to Benefit from the Recently Passed Corporate Tax Bill?

On Wednesday, January 10, 2018, the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (PRC), in a 3-2 vote, accepted a modified stipulation in an electric rate case for Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM). The approval by the Commission, if accepted by the stipulation signatories, would result in a 2% increase, spread over two years, for …

Supreme Court Declines Review of Ninth Circuit Agua Caliente Decision – Reserved Tribal Water Rights Include Groundwater

On November 27, 2017, the Supreme Court denied review of the Ninth Circuit’s decision in Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians v. Coachella Valley Water Dist., 849 F.3d 1262 (9th Cir. 2017). In that case, an Indian tribe brought an action against a California water district and desert water agency seeking a declaration that it …