1980 Scorecard Vote
S. 885. The vote is on the Lowry amendment to forbid the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) from guaranteeing to buy electricity from power plants that were not even built yet. The Pacific Northwest Power Planning Act was one of the biggest giveaways to the utilities and the nuclear industry ever enacted. The consumer had to take all of the risks and foot all of the bill, which according to Rep. Jim Weaver would ultimately cost over $46 billion. One provision allowed BPA to force consumers to pay in advance for anticipated electrical output of proposed new plants, even if they never actually produced any electricity. The industry's plans to build five or more nuclear plants in the Northwest depend largely on this subsidy, a blatant form of no-fault capitalism that destroys any incentive to keep costs down or to conserve energy. The amendment removed this subsidy and required BPA to make fiscally responsible contracts for the actual output of existing plants. Rejected 93-245. November 13, 1980. YES is the correct vote.