Evidentiary hearings for Interstate Reliability Project to begin in Connecticut June 4

The Connecticut Siting Council will begin evidentiary hearings involving the Connecticut portion of the Interstate Reliability Project on June 4.

The 75-mile, 345-kV transmission line is one of four projects that make up the New England East-West Solution, according to TransmissionHub data.

The National Grid USA portion of the project will begin in Millbury, Mass., and travel south through Sutton, Northbridge, Uxbridge and Millville in the vicinity of Route 146 into North Smithfield, R.I. It will then travel west to Burrillville, R.I., and into Connecticut where it will connect to a Northeast Utilities (NYSE:NU) line at Killingly. The Northeast Utilities project is a 38-mile, 345-kV transmission line that originates at Killingly and terminates at the Card Street substation in the town of Lebanon, Conn.

Northeast Utilities’ Connecticut Light and Power has filed an application for a certificate of environmental compatibility and public need for the Connecticut portion of the project with the council.

Linda Roberts, the council’s executive director, told TransmissionHub June 1 that the first two evidentiary hearings will be held June 4 and 5 in New Britain, Conn., and only council members, parties, interveners and the applicant may participate.

More hearings are scheduled later this month and the council’s analyst will then gather findings of fact, she said. The deadline for the council’s decision on the matter is set for Jan. 9, 2013, but that may change if an extension is required, Roberts said.

Several comments have been filed with the council, according to its website, including an April 24 letter from Mansfield, Conn., Mayor Elizabeth Paterson.

Paterson said that while the town recognizes the need for the project itself, it opposes the proposed route through eastern Connecticut for several reasons, including that the proposed project would reduce the functional value of existing and potential farmland due to the additional soil disturbance and associated construction and maintenance impacts.

A Northeast Utilities spokesperson told TransmissionHub June 1 that the company will respond to such comments through the council’s process.

National Grid is a subsidiary of National Grid plc.

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3263 Articles
Corina Rivera-Linares, chief editor for TransmissionHub, has covered the U.S. power industry for the past 15 years. Before joining TransmissionHub, Corina covered renewable energy and environmental issues, as well as transmission, generation, regulation, legislation and ISO/RTO matters at SNL Financial. She has also covered such topics as health, politics, and education for weekly newspapers and national magazines. She can be reached at clinares@endeavorb2b.com.