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In addition to signing House Bill 1281 on March 27 - doubling Colorado's existing renewable portfolio standard - Gov. Bill Ritter, D-Colo., signed Senate Bill 100 (S.B.100), which will help connect transmission in Colorado to the state's wind resources. Similar to competitive renewable energy zone legislation in Texas, S.B.100 requires electric utilities subject to rate regulation to identify high-potential wind-energy locations by undertaking biennial reviews to designate energy resource zones in which transmission constraints hinder the delivery of electricity. In addition, these utilities must develop construction plans to improve transmission capacity within these zones, but they will be allowed to recover costs during construction.

"Voters set the stage in 2004 with the passage of Amendment 37," says Ritter. "Today, we amplify that commitment by doubling our renewable energy standard through House Bill 1281 and by making it easier to load wind power onto the electric grid through Senate Bill 100."

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