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Transmission Line 705 Project FAQs

Article VII of the New York State Public Service Law, "Siting of Major Utility Transmission Facilities,” requires a full environmental, public health and safety impact review of the siting, design, construction, and operation of major transmission facilities in New York State. Any proposed electric transmission line with a design capacity of 100,000 volts (100kV) or more extending for at least 10 miles, or of 125kV or more extending a distance of at least one mile, must submit an application to the New York State Public Service Commission (Commission) for a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need.

Article VII prescribes the content of an application, including a description of the project’s location, alternative locations, expected economic effects and environmental studies. The Commission makes the final decision regarding all Article VII applications after careful review and with public input. For a complete description of the application review process, please refer to the Commission’s Article VII Review Process Guide.

The Project is not anticipated to induce significant changes to the residential, commercial, or industrial land-use patterns in the surrounding area. It will not impact the local economy due to its cost and duration of construction activities.

The Project is anticipated to result in short-term positive impacts to the local economy throughout the construction phase. Construction of medium-scale underground transmission projects generally requires an increased workforce. The temporary workforce could be seeking lodging, food and supplies from the local communities, which will provide an influx of sales and tax revenues for the area. Construction of the Project will not significantly affect permanent employment rates in the Project area.

Yes, once the TL705 Article VII application is filed with the Commission, there will be several opportunities for individuals to participate in the Article VII review process. The need for and the proposed location for this 138kV underground transmission line, as well as its cost, environmental impact, and construction and maintenance practices, are all subject to review by the public.

Members of the public can provide comments to the Commission at any time during the Article VII process. This can be done by sending a written statement electronically or via US mail (Secretary to the Commission (Hon. Kathleen H. Burgess, Secretary to the Commission, New York State Public Service Commission, Empire State Plaza, Agency Building 3, Albany, NY 12223-1350)), filling out a "Comment Form” on the Commission’s website, or calling the Commission’s Opinion Line (1-800-335-2120). This line is set up to take comments about pending cases from in-State callers, 24 hours a day. These comments are not transcribed verbatim, but a summary is provided to the Commission. Additionally, the public is encouraged to attend Public Statement Hearings, which are conducted by the Commission in the project vicinity to receive statements of position or concern from residents affected by the proposed project. These statements from the public are entered into the official record upon which the Commission will ultimately base its decision.

As the project is currently proposed, the entire route is located within the public right-of-way (ROW). During the planning stage, O&R and its environmental and engineering consultants have been focusing on maintaining the route in the public ROW to minimize the need to obtain additional property to construct the route. The proposed route is subject to approval of the New York State Public Service Commission; the final route for this Project will be determined at the end of the Article VII process.

Electricity plays an essential role in our lives. In addition to lighting our homes and workplaces, it powers our home appliances, computers, office equipment, medical equipment, train systems, elevators, and many other devices that add comfort to our lives. Electricity produces electric and magnetic fields (EMFs).

EMFs are invisible lines of force produced by electricity. Electric fields are related to voltage and magnetic fields are related to current. To understand what happens when electricity flows through a wire, visualize a garden hose. Voltage is like water pressure in the hose; current is like the water flow itself.

Despite the completion of thousands of studies there is no sound scientific or medical basis to conclude that EMF exposure causes health effects.

Several health organizations have conducted reviews of the EMF literature. You can access their assessments below:

U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences

National Cancer Institute (NIH)

World Health Organization (WHO)

During the routing phase of the Project, O&R focused on selecting a proposed route which would have the least impact to the environment. Instead of an overhead route, which would include significant tree clearing and potential impacts to sensitive habitats, O&R is proposing an underground route along a public right-of-way to minimize environmental impacts. Selection of an underground route also eliminates the visibility of the conductor and supporting monopoles.

In Exhibit 4 of the Article VII application, we evaluate potential environmental impacts, including: cultural resources, noise, rare, threatened and endangered species, sensitive habitats including wetlands, and water resources; and EMF and outline mitigation measures that will be used to minimize impacts to these sensitive receptors.

Upon approval of the proposed route from the PSC, O&R will develop an Environmental Management and Construction Plan (EM&CP), which will outline the mitigation measures in the design that will be used during construction to minimize impacts to the environment.

Impacts to roads and traffic will be limited to Project construction. No impacts will occur during normal operation of Line 705. The appropriate State and County, and Local officials will be consulted by O&R and the required permits will be obtained in advance of construction. O&R will work with State, County and Local officials to minimize impacts to traffic to the maximum extent practicable during construction and will notify the appropriate jurisdiction of the approximate date work will begin along the roadway or within the roadway crossing. Appropriate signage will be used to direct traffic around and/or thru the work area. Notifications will also be posted on the Project website.

To maintain and promote an open and transparent permitting process, the project Public Outreach Team ensures that affected landowners and the public receive important project information, and the ability to ask questions and voice concerns. O&R encourages our neighbors to contact us with their questions and concerns.

We can be contacted via:

– Public Informational Sessions

– Public Statement Hearings

– email:

– Project specific telephone line: 1-888-745-8660

– Project specific website

The Project Team will inform the public via Fact Sheet by mail or newspaper publication about key project milestones. Nearby landowners will receive correspondence from the Team during the permitting process. Prior to the start of construction, these landowners will receive written notification, and as the stages of construction unfold, landowners will receive periodic updates. The public is encouraged to visit the Project specific website to obtain a current status of the Project. This website will provide information/updates on project description, map of the proposed route, benefits, permits, overall schedule, construction progress, etc.