B y PJ Ferguson

 

A new project could bring in excess of $200,000 in additional property taxes per year to the village of Whitehall.

The Champlain Hudson Power Express is seeking approval to run its 330-mile renewable energy transmission line that runs from Quebec to New York City through the village. The company will be required to pay taxes throughout the duration of the line’s operation.

The $200,000 figure is based off a “high level estimate” provided by Josh Bagnato of Transmission Developers Inc.

Several neighboring towns have already approved this proposal including Dresden and Fort Ann.

In addition to the benefits of the tax revenue, the project may create some local jobs and will help to reduce carbon emissions, said Bagnato.

If the village board approves the resolution, construction would be set to begin within the next four years. With the approval, the village is demonstrating its “general support of the project” and giving permission for the line to cross six village-owned roads.

“We need the consent of the village to be able to install the transmissions across those roads,” said Bagnato.

The line is currently not mapped out to cross any private property within the village.

Buried five feet underground, Bagnato said that they would need to coordinate with village DPW to ensure not to impact any existing infrastructure.

“It’s really built to last once it’s buried,” said Bagnato, adding that there would not be “ongoing maintenance” after its installation.

Trustee Teresa Austin asked Bagnato how many jobs would be created in the area.

“I do think there’ll be local jobs, primarily union jobs,” answered Bagnato who earlier said that the project would create jobs “throughout the state.”

“Exactly how many in what field is to be determined.”

According to Bagnato, the Power Express line has been developed for “almost 10 years” and carries a price tag of about three billion dollars.

The village board concluded that it would need some time to “do more research” but set a public hearing on the resolution provided by Bagnato for June 16 at 6 p.m.

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