ROFR bills killed in Wisconsin


Oklahoma isn’t alone in dealing with the controversial issue of the Right of First Refusal, the ability of utilities to refuse competitive bidding for major transmission line projects. Other states are too.

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission is in the midst of a Notice of Inquiry in researching the pros and cons of the issue. It was also the subject of a recent legislative interim study and is likely to be considered in the form of a bill in the approaching legislative session.

But, in the past week, a ROFR effort was killed in the state of Wisconsin and the defeat  was hailed by the Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition. In a statement, the Coalition welcomed the decision by the Wisconsin Assembly and Senate to not take action on AB 470 or SB 481, what the Coalition labeled as “two anti-consumer Right of First Refusal (ROFR) bills.”

“These anti-transmission competition pieces of legislation pushed by incumbent electric utilities are just two of the most recent harmful, anti-consumer ROFR bills that have been introduced across the country to pad the pockets of utilities and increase electricity costs for consumers,” declared the Coalition.

“Wisconsin lawmakers made the right decision to not take action on these anti-competitive pieces of legislation. These harmful bills would prevent expensive transmission projects from being competitively bid thereby increasing electricity costs for decades to come, harming Wisconsin consumers and businesses,”stated Paul Cicio, Chair of the Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition.

“We encourage lawmakers to continue embracing electricity transmission competition.”

Organizations supporting transmission competition include:

  • AARP
  • Associated Builders and Contractors of Wisconsin
  • American Economic Liberties Project
  • Americans for Prosperity
  • Americans for Tax Reform
  • Citizens Utility Board of Wisconsin
  • Clean Wisconsin
  • Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition
  • Glass Packaging Institute
  • Industrial Energy Consumers of America
  • Midwest Food Products Association
  • Quad
  • R Street Institute
  • Wisconsin Cast Metals Association
  • Wisconsin Industrial Energy Group
  • Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty

The Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition (ETCC) describes itself as a broad-based, nation-wide coalition committed to increasing competition in America’s electricity transmission infrastructure.

The ETCC represents a diverse group of more than 85 companies and organizations from 48 states, including manufacturing groups, retail electric consumers, state consumer advocates, think tanks, and non-incumbent transmission developers.

Press Contact:
Julian Graham