Ohio Power Siting Board Approves Construction of Substation and Transmission Line in Brown and Clermont Counties

Ohio Power Siting Board Approves Construction of
Substation and Transmission Line in Brown and Clermont Counties

COLUMBUS, OHIO (March 20, 2006) – The Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) today approved the construction of the Hillcrest electric substation and Hillcrest-Eastwood overhead transmission line to be located in parts of Brown County and Clermont County. The Cincinnati Gas & Electric Company (CG&E) will construct, own, and operate the facilities.

On June 13, 2005, CG&E filed separate applications for the construction of the electric substation and transmission line. CG&E cited increased growth in eastern Clermont County and western Brown County as the reason for proposing these facilities, which are designed to increase the reliability of the electric transmission system during peak usage.

The Hillcrest substation will be built in Green Township beneath the existing Stuart-Foster 345 kilovolt (kV) transmission line. The substation will occupy approximately seven acres, and construction is estimated to cost $6.1 million, with most of the cost associated with transmission system equipment. Construction of the substation will have minimal environmental impacts. The substation will tap into the existing Stuart-Foster line and also connect with the new Hillcrest-Eastwood transmission line.

The application submitted by CG&E included a preferred site and an alternate site for the substation facility. On Dec. 23, 2005, OPSB Staff filed a report recommending the preferred site.

The proposed 138 kV Hillcrest-Eastwood transmission line will be built between the existing Eastwood substation and the proposed Hillcrest substation in parts of Brown County and Clermont County. Construction of the transmission line will cost approximately $4.9 million. However, CG&E estimates that the project will generate annual property tax revenue of $130,000 to $153,000 in the first 10 years of operation. Construction of the transmission line will have minimal environmental impacts.

The application for the transmission line included a preferred route and an alternate route. OPSB Staff filed a report on Dec. 23, 2005 recommending the preferred route, which is approximately 9.3 miles long.

A public hearing was held in Mt. Orab, Ohio on Jan. 12, 2006 concerning both the proposed substation and transmission line. Five members of the public offered testimony, all of which was directed at the transmission line project. The OPSB evaluated the proposals and considered the comments and recommendations from the public and parties, and concluded that certificates should be granted for the proposed facilities using the preferred site and route. Construction of the Hillcrest substation and Hillcrest-Eastwood transmission line is expected to begin on July 1, 2006, with the facilities being placed in service by June 30, 2008.

The OPSB reviews applications for construction of large electric and natural gas facilities in Ohio. The 11-member board is comprised of representatives of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO), the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, the state departments of Development, Natural Resources, Agriculture and Health, the Ohio General Assembly, and the public. The Chairman of the PUCO also chairs the OPSB.

Additional information regarding this project is available on the OPSB Web site at www.OPSB.ohio.gov.

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