Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corporation (AECC) has requested an Arkansas Public Service Commission (APSC) order by Nov. 1, approving a certificate of convenience and necessity (CCN) to build, own, and operate a new 161-kV tap switching station (Baltz Lake Project) on about 6.6 acres in Randolph County, Ark., to serve Clay County Electric Cooperative Corporation (CCECC).
AECC added in its May 31 application for a CCN filed with the APSC that if approved, the Baltz Lake Project would supply a new 161-kV transmission line (Ingram Line), about eight miles in length, to be built by CCECC to supply the new Ingram 161-24.9-kV substation.
AECC said that the Baltz Lake Project is required by the public convenience and necessity to provide CCECC with a new 161-kV point of delivery to serve its expanding loads in Clay and Randolph counties.
AECC also noted that it supplies CCECC in the Pocahontas area of Randolph County at 161-kV from two 161-kV substations – Pocahontas East and Pocahontas West. Those two substations are the origination and sources of CCECC’s 24.9-kV network, which supplies CCECC’s load centers in the Pocahontas area of Randolph County, AECC said.
Due to reliability concerns and load growth, the 161-kV service from those two substations is becoming inadequate, and could leave a portion of the CCECC network in the dark should an outage occur at either substation, AECC said.
If approved, the Baltz Lake Project would be built in two phases in order to coordinate with Entergy Arkansas Inc.’s (EAI) outage schedule for its 161-kV line serving the Pocahontas North substation.
The first phase would be to build a temporary connection to tap the EAI line so that the new CCECC Ingram Line can be served, AECC added, noting that EAI has tentatively scheduled the outage on its line for April 1, 2018.
The second phase would be to complete the construction of the permanent facilities, connect CCECC’s Ingram Line, and route the two sections of EAI’s line into the Baltz Lake Project, AECC said, adding that the desired in-service date for the second phase is June 1, 2019.
If the Baltz Lake Project is built at the proposed location, AECC said that there would be no significant impact on aesthetic pleasure, health, safety, the environment, or any existing or planned property uses.
AECC said that estimated cost of the project is $3.8m, and that it would pay for the construction using cash out of general funds.