Western Governors have expressed concern that existing state hydropower licensing authorities are in danger of being replaced or impeded by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).
The Governors' July 18, 2016 outreach to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce is in reference to Subtitle B: Hydropower Regulatory Modernization of the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act of 2015.
The Governors' letter noted they "recognize the importance" of hydropower, especially considering that "the West accounts for nearly 70% of the nation’s hydroelectric power generation." But the letter to Representatives Fred Upton and Frank J. Pallone, Jr., also emphasized that states are vested with authority to manage water within their borders.
Specifically, the Governors cited WGA policy resolution, Water Resource Management in the West: "Nothing in any act of Congress or Executive Branch regulatory action should be construed as affecting or intending to affect states’ primacy over the allocation and administration of their water resources."
The Western Governors' concluded the letter with the "request that language in Subtitle B of H.R. 8 be removed or amended so that existing state hydropower licensing authorities are not replaced or in any way impeded by FERC jurisdiction."