Texans to vote on funding to modernize electricity generation

By Nicole Jao

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Texans are set to vote on Tuesday on a constitutional amendment to determine whether the state will create a special fund for financing the “construction, maintenance, and modernization of its electric generating facilities.”

The energy fund would be administered and used only by the Public Utility Commission of Texas to provide loans and grants to maintain and upgrade electric generating facilities.

The biggest chunk of the fund, $7.2 billion, would go into loans and incentives to build new power-generating facilities in the ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas) region.

The proposal, titled Proposition 7, is one of several efforts by lawmakers and regulators in Texas to avoid another energy crisis like the one caused by a deadly winter storm in February 2021.

That storm, known as Winter Storm Uri, left millions without power, water and heat for days as ERCOT struggled to prevent a grid collapse after the shutdown of an unusually large amount of generation.

(Reporting by Nicole Jao; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)