Comments due by April 11 on Virginia SCC staff’s motion regarding Dominion Virginia Power’s proposed 230-kV line

Participants in the proceeding involving Virginia Electric and Power’s (Dominion Virginia Power) proposed Remington–Gordonsville 230-kV double circuit transmission line may file by April 11 responses to a motion filed by the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) staff requesting that the SCC eliminate an alternative to the project proposed by the company.

As noted in the April 4 SCC hearing examiner’s ruling, Dominion Virginia Power last November filed an application with the SCC for a certificate of public convenience and necessity, proposing to build, entirely along and primarily within existing right of way (ROW), about 38.2 miles of the 230-kV Remington–Gordonsville Line #2153 in Fauquier, Culpeper, Orange and Albemarle counties, between its existing Remington substation in Fauquier County, and the existing Gordonsville substation in Albemarle County.

The company further proposed to build and install associated 230-kV facilities at its Gordonsville and Remington substations.

The hearing examiner noted that the company proposed two variations of an electrical solution that would connect the existing Remington substation to a new switching station in the vicinity of the existing Rappahannock Electric Cooperative’s Pratts Delivery Point in Madison County, Va.

The SCC last December issued an order for notice and hearing that, among other things, scheduled a local hearing in Orange, Va., for April 28, and a hearing in Richmond for June 28.

SCC staff on April 1 filed the motion requesting that the Remington-Pratts alternative proposed in the proceeding be eliminated from further consideration.

Staff said in its motion that Dominion Virginia Power’s current application is procedurally unique because the proposed Remington-Pratts alternative requires the rebuild of facilities that do not belong to the company by an entity other than the company. Specifically, Dominion Virginia Power states that "[the Remington-Pratts alternative] would require the rebuild of existing single circuit 115 kV line as a single circuit 230 kV line between Gordonsville to Pratts; these facilities are currently owned by FirstEnergy and are not proposed to be rebuilt by [the company].”

Thus, staff added, the Remington-Pratts alternative relies on the rebuild of facilities belonging to FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE) by FirstEnergy.

FirstEnergy is an entity that is not a party to the proceeding, not subject to the SCC’s jurisdiction in the case, and which has not agreed with Dominion Virginia Power or in any way represented that it would agree to rebuild the required component of the Remington-Pratts alternative, staff said.

Even if the SCC were to approve that alternative, the SCC could not compel FirstEnergy to rebuild the components necessary to complete the Remington-Pratts alternative, staff said.

While that makes the proposed alternative rather unique as compared to alternatives typically considered in transmission cases, it also means that the SCC has no assurance that the necessary component of the identified alternative, if approved, would be built, staff said.

Without that assurance, the identified Remington-Pratts alternative should not be seriously considered as an alternative to the proposed project, staff said.

The hearing examiner noted that according to staff, the company supports the motion, and all other participants either support or do not oppose the motion.

Dominion Virginia Power is a subsidiary of Dominion Resources (NYSE:D).

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3059 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.