About that hearing | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, May 14, 2009

About that hearing

Posted By on Thu, May 14, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Yesterday, opponents of the coal-fired power plant in Hempstead County argued before the state Court of Appeals that the Arkansas Public Service Commission did not properly review the need for the SWEPCO plant.  An attorney from the attorney general's office said the PSC had complied with the law.  John Lyon, with the Arkansas News Bureau, has more. 

The state Court of Appeals heard oral arguments Wednesday in an appeal by a group of landowners who oppose SWEPCO’s proposed 600-megawatt, $1.6 billion John W. Turk plant in Hempstead County. The PSC voted 2-1 to approve SWEPCO’s application in November 2007 after 17 days of hearings.

Rick Addison, an attorney for the landowners, told the court that several months before the hearings on the permit application began, the commission ruled that SWEPCO had a need to add to its power supply. The landowners were not involved in that proceeding, and the ruling prevented them from making the case during later proceedings that SWEPCO did not need the plant, he said.

Lawyers for the state argued there was nothing to prevent landowners from participating in the initial hearings on the need for the plant.  No notice was sent to individual landowners in the area, but none was required by law.  The court did not issue a ruling yesterday.  We'll keep you posted.  

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