KCC cancels evidentiary hearing in relation to Westar’s proposed 345-kV line

The Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC), in a Nov. 3 order, canceled an evidentiary hearing scheduled for Nov. 8 in relation to Westar Energy’s (NYSE:WR) proposed 345-kV line in Leavenworth, Kan.

As TransmissionHub reported, Westar on Aug. 17 filed an application with the KCC for a siting permit granting the company the right to build a single-circuit, 345-kV transmission line from its Stranger Creek substation to an interface with KCP&L’s transmission line, located on the Kansas side of the Missouri River north of Leavenworth, Kansas, to replace the existing 161-kV line between those same end points.

The company noted that the Southwest Power Pool (SPP), during its development of its integrated transmission plan (ITP), identified an economic need related to the existing 161-kV line. Westar said that it received a notice to construct (NTC) from SPP to replace the 161-kV line with a 345-kV line, which is the subject of the application, as a solution for the economic need identified by SPP. The SPP Board of Directors approved the project last October.

The proposed line, Westar added, would address the congestion issue that exists with the 161-kV line and would allow for greater access to less expensive power.

Westar said that it currently estimates that it would cost about $28m to build its portion of the proposed line. The length of Westar’s proposed line would be about 11.8 miles, and located in Leavenworth County. The transmission line would be built using either tubular steel “H-Frame” structures or single pole tubular steel structures. The final preferred route selected by Westar is on the same general alignment as the existing transmission line that it would replace, the company said.

Westar added that it anticipates that construction of its proposed project would be completed by December 2018.

According to the Nov. 3 order, the KCC on Aug. 25 entered an order setting the evidentiary hearing for Nov. 8.

The parties in the proceeding on Nov. 2 filed an uncontested joint motion to cancel the hearing, indicating that they had reached agreement on all of the issues in the docket, had waived cross-examination of all witnesses, and did not believe it was necessary to hold an evidentiary hearing in the docket.

Westar and KCC staff also indicated that they would file a joint proposed final order in the docket by the deadline originally set in the procedural schedule for the filing of simultaneous reply briefs (Nov. 23), the KCC added.

The KCC said that it agrees with the parties that an evidentiary hearing is unnecessary given the resolution of all issues by the parties.

The KCC said that staff and Westar are to file a joint proposed final order by Nov. 23.

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3231 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.