IT'S YOUR POWER
A tradition of public
power in Nebraska has brought real benefits to the state, including
low-cost electricity, local control, and responsive customer
service. In rural America of the early twentieth
century, electricity was a scarce commodity. Investor-owned
utilities found that it was not economically feasible to provide
electric service to rural areas. Recognizing that void,
Nebraska's U.S. Senator, George Norris, was certain that publicly
owned utilities could provide electricity to everyone.
In 1936, Norris led
the fight to pass the Rural Electrification Act (REA). This revolutionary
legislation enabled the creation of publicly owned power
generation and delivery systems for the common good. Today,
unlike many other states that rely on a combination of public and
private providers, Nebraska remains wholly served by public power
Nebraska is the
only state in America totally served by a consumer-owned
public power system delivering electricity as a nonprofit
public power offers reliable, efficient, friendly service.
utilities are governed by Nebraskans.
As a result of a law
passed by the U.S. Congress in 1992, change is likely to come to
our public power system. The Federal Energy Policy Act
established the framework for electric competition at the
wholesale level and created open access to electric transmission
systems. This act does not mandate competition.
However, it places electricity one step closer to the same type of
deregulatory track at work in other industries, including
airlines, trucking, railroads, and telecommunications.
Nebraskans can rest
assured their public power systems will continue to focus on the
best interest of the entire state by providing low-cost,
dependable power. Deregulation may bring a variety of
power-marketing entities and utilities to the state, offering
customers alternatives to public power. Here in Nebraska we
are confident that public power will remain the people's choice.