TVA – lies, lies, lies!
October 7, 2015
Now that TVA has sold a billion dollars in 50-year nonredeemable bonds, they can continue obligating ratepayers for projects that have nothing to do with the production of electricity. Of course, TVA has been on the “self-sufficiency” kick since 1959 when Congress voted to release TVA from serious oversight, i.e., no more pesky appropriations.
Since then, TVA has been on a rampage of mismanagement, over-spending of billions, acquiring more and more electric utilities and locking those dollars in for ratepayers, who have no stake in TVA. Their only gain is in an increase in electricity bills.
I know, I know, Congress has too much on its plate to worry about a renegade federal agency. The fact is that TVA is running up the cost of electricity not only to ratepayers but ultimately to taxpayers. It’s a “no-win, no-win” predicament that only Congress can solve. The immediate thing they can do is to begin the process of TVA privatization.
Years ago, many of the cities and communities in the South participated in the now defunct Urban Renewal Administration (URA) programs. A lot of them were in TVA territory. TVA is undertaking many of the same kinds of projects common to URA. Through loans and grants, URA disbursed many millions of federal tax dollars.
Now, TVA is heading down the same path as urban renewal, the failed agency. If history repeats itself, TVA is a good example. TVA has gone so far as to model the Shoals in N. Alabama after an urban renewal project; the same kind of approvals required by TVA before any land can be sold.
I participated in a URA study that found the hang-up in many of the 1,500 active urban renewal projects nationwide. It seems that the original project design was flawed. The way the program was designed, completion of projects would go on indefinitely; just as are the designs of the TVA projects in Sheffield and Muscle Shoals. What is guaranteed is that federal oversight by TVA is assured for many years.
What the study of URA projects found out was the planning of projects averaged three years and the execution of them was 15 years – and counting.
Will federal involvement in the South go on forever? Will there ever return again the entrepreneurialism that Henry Ford and Thomas Edison sparked in the 1920s? In my opinion N. Alabama will continue its present state as long as the federal largess continues to flow; as long as TVA has a hand in it.