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 KWUA News Release: Oregon Public Utilities Commission Order
April 13, 2006

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On Wednesday, April 12th the Oregon PUC issued an order that in technical terms will move Oregon Project irrigators to a tariff based rate for irrigation and drainage pumping. The practical result of the decision is that the Oregon PUC worked its way through a very complicated issue and made a ruling in a timely and equitable manner.

The good news for Project irrigators in Oregon is that the Commission clearly recognized that irrigators are "entitled to establish that a mutually beneficial relationship continues to exist (between the irrigators and PacifiCorp) and seek a rate credit for any quantifiable benefits provided".

Steve Kandra, President of the Klamath Water Users Association said, "This order achieves most of what we set out to do. They recognized that the Klamath River Basin Compact does mean something and that there is an important relationship between irrigation and power generation. The Commission also said irrigators are entitled to a rate credit, provided we can quantify how we provide value to the hydro-production facilities on the river".

The Commission has outlined the steps irrigators will need to take in order to make their case for receiving a credit.

In the interim, the Commission has established that irrigators will begin the transition as outlined by the legislatively enacted SB 81 which provides a 7 year phase-in.

Klamath Project irrigators are engaged in productive discussions with a variety of stakeholders regarding hydro power re-licensing issues and are optimistic about the direction of those discussions.

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