Sen. Fraser questions PUC's authority to change electricity market

Nov 25, 2013, 3:10pm CST


Staff Writer- Dallas Business Journal
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Sen. Troy Fraser, R-Abilene on Monday questioned whether the Texas Public Utility Commission even has the authority to make drastic changes to the state's electricity market.

Fraser said a decision such as switching to a capacity market should be decided by the state legislature, not appointed members of the PUC. Power producers are pushing for a capacity market where they are paid for the capacity they have as a means to encourage construction of new plant generation. Opponents say it could increase electric bills by billions of dollars a year.

"If we have a decision that's going to increase electricity rates by this amount of money, the decision should be made by elected members of the Legislature and not by a state agency that's not responsible to the voters," Fraser said in an interview Monday.