Aug 01 2001


Bill Expands Tennessee Valley Authority Board of Directors to Include Two Members from Each Participating State

U.S. Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-AL) today introduced legislation to reform the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Board of Directors to include two members from each participating state and creates a Chief Executive Officer position.

Sen. Shelby's legislation, introduced with Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), would restructure the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley authority to resemble a private corporation. The legislation requires the President to appoint two board members from each of the seven states in which TVA operates, totaling 14 members. Board members would serve on a part-time basis, for a term of four years, and would be limited to two terms of service. Under current law, the TVA board consists of three members, with no residency requirements and no limits on their length of service.

More importantly, the legislation creates the position of Chief Executive Officer to oversee the daily operations of the Tennessee Valley Authority. The Chief Executive Officer would also serve a four year term, however, no limit is placed on the number of terms the CEO may serve. The goal of this newly created "corporate structure" for the Board, with a CEO at the helm is to create a more fiscally sound and responsible Tennessee Valley Authority.

Senator Shelby said, "I absolutely believe both our nation's interests, and Alabama's interests, would be best represented by having individuals from Alabama and the other participating states serve on the board. It is very unfortunate that the TVA board has never had a member from Alabama, or from many of the other states in which TVA operates. Our legislation will create balance within the board, and will ensure that Alabama's best interests are represented."

Senator Sessions said, "This legislation will ensure Alabama's interests are represented at the highest level of TVA management. Had we had a strong chief executive officer, TVA ratepayers would not be carrying a $25.5 billion debt today. TVA is a self-sufficient agency; it is financially independent. The stronger the management the lower the rates. A 14-member board overseeing the performance of a professional chief executive officer is the model many successful companies use. It is efficient and will help to ensure that TVA will be managed at the highest level of performance."

The states participating in TVA include Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.