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RICL petitions for Iowa franchise

By Staff | Nov 19, 2014

DES MOINES (RICL) – Rock Island Clean Line LLC , a subsidiary of Clean Line Energy Partners LLC, filed petitions with the Iowa Utilities Board on Nov. 6 for issuance of electric transmission line franchises.

The petitions request approval to construct, maintain and operate an electric transmission line in 16 Iowa counties.

The Rock Island Clean Line project is an approximately 500-mile overhead, direct current transmission line that will deliver 3,500 megawatts of low-cost wind energy generation from the greater northwest Iowa area to communities in Illinois and in other states to the east with a strong demand for clean, reliable energy. The project will encourage the manufacturing of transmission and wind turbine components, support thousands of jobs, and generate millions of dollars in state and local tax revenues in Iowa.

In its petition to the IUB, Rock Island formally requested approval of a route for the Rock Island transmission line.

The company’s proposed route resulted from more than three years of routing work, during which project representatives met with landowners, environmental agencies, government officials and other stakeholders to gather feedback, collected thousands of routing comments and considered hundreds of different potential routing alternatives.

Rock Island is working closely with landowners and is committed to offering fair compensation for easements and any remediation work that may be required as a result of the construction process.

As an example, a landowner in Grundy County with an easement on his or her property that is half a mile long by 145 feet wide with two structures can expect total compensation of around $115,000, plus crop damages.

Since its inception in 2010, Rock Island has held hundreds of meetings in Iowa and Illinois to introduce the transmission project, answer questions and gather feedback on routing options.

These meetings have included dozens of community roundtables, public open houses, formal IUB informational meetings, and other meetings with local, state and federal agencies. Rock Island is committed to an open, transparent process that keeps landowners, the public, elected officials, community leaders and the media informed about all facets of the project’s planning and construction process.

Rock Island said it is committed to creating local and Iowa-based beneficiaries of the project. The company previously announced an agreement designating Sabre Tubular Structures, a Division of Sabre Industries Inc. as a preferred supplier for the transmission structures for the line, which would be produced at its Sioux City facilities.

Sabre will establish a supplier base within the project area (primarily Iowa and Illinois) and will seek to supply raw material from local companies.

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