March 1, 2023


Montana Right-of-First-Refusal Law Fails to Advance-Consumers Win!

Consumer Group Applauds Montana Lawmakers for Opposing Legislation that Would  Raise Electricity Rates for Montana Businesses and Households

HELENA – Lawmakers in Montana yesterday voted 11-1 in favor of tabling Senate Bill 353, one of several so-called “Right of First Refusal” (ROFR) bills introduced in states across the United States, that would favor incumbent utility monopolies and lead to higher electricity prices for consumers. In a statement, Paul Cicio, Chair of the Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition applauded the failure of the bill to advance as a victory for consumers. “Electricity transmission competition has been proven to lower costs, every time and everywhere it is allowed. Montana Senate Bill 353 was a bad bill that would have only boosted the profits of incumbent utility monopolies while hurting Montana businesses and households. The tabling of this bill is cause for celebration for anyone who supports lower electricity costs for consumers.” Montana SB 353’s failure to advance comes on the heels of the defeat of Oklahoma SB 498, another ROFR bill. Multiple states, including Indiana, Mississippi, Kansas, and Missouri, are also considering ROFR bills. “Other states should follow the examples set by Montana and Oklahoma and stand up for consumers by rejecting these anti-competitive bills. If America is going to reach its necessary grid expansion goals, it is vital that States find cost effective ways to build transmission infrastructure while promoting innovation. Competition is the only way to achieve those goals.” Electricity transmission competition leads to more affordable and reliable electricity services for consumers and has been shown to save consumers state as much as 40%.[1]


About the Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition The Electricity Transmission Competition Coalition (ETCC) is a broad-based, nation-wide coalition committed to increasing competition in America’s electricity transmission infrastructure. We advocate for common-sense policies and solutions that result in competitively priced transmission projects, which reduce energy costs for all ratepayers – from large manufacturers to residential consumers. The ETCC represents a diverse group of more than 86 companies and organizations from all 50 states, including manufacturing groups, retail electric consumers, state consumer advocates, public power representatives, think tanks, and non-incumbent transmission developers. For more information, visit: Press Contact: Julian Graham


[1] Brattle Group: Cost Savings Offered by Competition in Electric Transmission,



Read How the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Failure to Enforce Transmission Competition Will Lead to Decades of Electricity Price Inflation for American Consumers.