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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
August 13, 2014, at 9:00 a.m. CDT
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota


Commissioner Chris Nelson called the meeting to Order. Present were: Commission Counsel: John Smith; Commission Advisor: Greg Rislov; Staff Attorneys: Karen Cremer and Kristen Edwards; Staff Analysts: Brian Rounds, Darren Kearney, Patrick Steffensen; David Henry, Joseph Rezac, Eric Paulson, and Robin Meyerink; Consumer Affairs Supervisor: Deb Gregg; and Staff: Katlyn Gustafson.

Also present were:
Randy Schuring, Schuring Farms; Henry Ford, Montana-Dakota Utilities Co.; and Bob Mercer, Reporter

Joining the meeting by telephone were:
Chairman: Gary Hanson; Commissioner: Kristie Fiegen; Tom Welk and Jason Sutton, Boyce, Greenfield, Pashby & Welk, LLP, representing Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. and Otter Tail Power Company; Tamie Aberle, Montana-Dakota Utilities Co.; Bob Pesall, Pesall Law Firm, representing Gerald Pesall; Jason Weiers, Stephanie Hoff, and Al Koeckeritz,  Otter Tail Power Company; and Brad Morehouse


1.     EL13-028     In the Matter of the Application of Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. and Otter Tail Power Company for a Permit to Construct the Big Stone South to Ellendale 345 kV Transmission Line (Staff Analysts: Brian Rounds, Darren Kearney; Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

A lengthy discussion took place regarding docket EL13-028. A transcript of the discussion will be available on the Commission's web site when received by the Commission at An audio of the discussion can be found on the PUC website under Commission Actions, Commission Meeting Archives, 2014, August 13, 2014, recording located at:

     Commissioner Hanson moved to grant the Joint Motion for Approval of Settlement Stipulation and approve the Amended Settlement Stipulation as the basis for its final decision and order. 

     Commissioner Nelson moved to amend Condition 17 of the Amended Settlement Stipulation by adding the following language after the existing language of Condition 17:

"After Applicant has finished the soil sample field assessment in accordance with the specifications for such assessment prepared in consultation with an expert in the proper methodology for performing such a sampling survey, Applicant shall submit to the Commission a summary report of the results of the field assessment and Applicant's specific mitigation plans for minimizing the risk of the spread of soybean cyst nematode from contaminated locations to uncontaminated locations. At such time and throughout the construction period, one or more Commissioners or Staff shall have the right to request of Applicant confidential access to the survey results to enable the verification of the survey results, assess the appropriateness of the mitigation measures to address such results, and monitor the execution of the plan during construction."  Motion carried 3-0.

     Commissioner Hanson's original motion to grant the Joint Motion for Approval of Settlement Stipulation and approve the Amended Settlement Stipulation as the basis for its final decision and order as amended by Commissioner Nelson's motion to amend was taken up for action.  Motion carried 3-0.

There being no further business, at the hour of 9:30 a.m. the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission meeting adjourned.

/S/Joy Lashley
Joy Lashley
Administrative Assistant
PUC Email
August 13, 2014