By Matthew Saari

A monumental clean-energy project may shift some of the tax burden from Washington County taxpayers.

Details about the Champlain Hudson Power Express, including routing and impact upon the local area, were presented at a Putnam town meeting last Thursday by Josh Bagnato, vice president of project development for Transmission Developers Inc., the firm responsible for the project.

“My company and myself are developing two transmission line projects; one in New York and one in Vermont,” Bagnato said, explaining that the Champlain line is a 333-mile-long buried high voltage power line that will carry 1,000 megawatts of energy from a substation in Canada to a substation in Queens with the ultimate goal of supplying power to New York City.

“That’s a lot of power; that’s about what Vermont needs,” Bagnato said, providing a comparison.

The reason for the presentation Bagnato said was because the original proposed route through Lake Champlain may not be viable which means the transmission line would need to come ashore, through Putnam, Dresden, Whitehall and Fort Ann.

“That section of Lake Champlain as you know is quite shallow,” Bagnato said. “We can put it in Lake Champlain if we need but the engineers are saying ‘let’s see if there’s an alternative out there.’”

The line would come out of the lake at Putnam Station, down Route 3 to Lake Road then onto State Route 22 for about five miles before entering Dresden.

In this situation, Bagnato said, work crews would dig a trench, five feet deep and three feet wide, either along the road or along the road shoulder, which would ostensibly cause traffic delays for local residents.

However, with the line coming aground, it becomes a taxable asset for the various taxing authorities.



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