Clean Line strives to develop the Plains & Eastern Clean Line in a manner that is fair to affected Arkansas landowners and respectful of their property rights. Clean Line has attempted to contact affected landowners in Arkansas to inform them of the project, seek input and request their voluntary permission to perform ongoing studies and field surveys that support environmental and permitting requirements. Clean Line representatives are available to answer questions and address concerns. Please contact us, and we will respond promptly.
Development of a major infrastructure project requires coordination and review among several entities. The Department of Energy (DOE), in coordination with the Southwestern Power Administration, has completed an extensive environmental review of the Plains & Eastern Clean Line pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Numerous Arkansas state agencies gave input on the routing of the project and the NEPA process, including the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, and Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission.
Clean Line believes that local communities where the Plains & Eastern Clean Line is located should receive revenues for the benefit of local schools and other community services.
In Arkansas, we have developed a local contribution agreement to confirm and memorialize our commitment to provide payments to Arkansas counties and other taxing jurisdictions. The payments, to be made on an annual basis, are outlined in the Participation Agreement between Clean Line and DOE and total approximately $5 million in the first year and $140 million over the first 40 years of the project’s operation. The agreement includes a provision for the county to distribute the payments among the applicable taxing authorities based on the existing tax structure and the portion of the project in each taxing authority. These payments can be used to support local school districts and other community services in the counties where the transmission line is located.
The payment amount is developed in a manner consistent with the asset value method for the assessment of property taxes used in the state of Arkansas for public utilities. Each county payment is based on the value of the project assets and applicable millage rates for the county, school districts and other taxing authorities where the project facilities will be located.
The Plains & Eastern Clean Line will provide substantial amounts of low-cost, clean energy to Arkansas consumers. The project will also bring about rural economic development, create hundreds of jobs in Arkansas to construct the transmission line, and will reduce harmful air pollutants by millions of tons per year. Local governments will typically benefit from increased revenues from the transmission line infrastructure. Landowners will benefit from the tens of millions of dollars that will be paid for right-of-way, and will be able to continue to use their land for agricultural production and other purposes.
In addition, the Plains & Eastern Clean Line and the new wind farms made possible by the transmission line will create demand for manufacturers of wind turbine components and transmission components in Arkansas. Arkansas is the home of facilities operated by companies such as LM Wind Power, General Cable, Nucor Steel and Bekaert Steel. Completion of the Plains & Eastern Clean Line should lead to increased employment for those companies and others involved in the wind energy and transmission sectors.
Citizens across the region will benefit from cleaner air as a result of the new wind energy enabled by the Plains & Eastern Clean Line project, as that energy will displace more polluting forms of electric generation.
If your local utility decides that it is in their customers’ best interest to buy power from the line (no fuel cost, no pollution, renewable resource, etc.), they will ultimately incorporate the costs of using the new transmission line and purchasing power from generators connected to it into your electricity bills. Clean Line expects that utilities will purchase power and transmission service from the project if it makes economic sense to the utility and its customers.
Every landowner’s property is different, and without knowing all the specifics it is difficult to say definitively what impact, if any, the proposed transmission line would have on a property. However, the relationship between transmission lines and property values has been the subject of systematic research for nearly 50 years. Clean Line commissioned Tom Priestly to perform a review of this body of research. His review concluded that these studies show that being close to electric transmission lines can have little or no negative long-term effects on residential property values, with average impacts ranging from no effect on value to a decrease in value of up to 10 percent. To see a full copy of the report, please click here. All that said, landowners will be compensated for 100% of the fee value of the land in which the easement area is located and will receive additional payments if they have structures on their land.
Beginning in May 2016, Clean Line will conduct field surveys for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line transmission project with a focus on the identification of aquatic, biological, and cultural resources. Multiple contractors and subcontractors will be working across the project area in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Tennessee to support this effort. Land agents for Plains & Eastern are contacting landowners to obtain survey permission, provide notification of survey activities, and answer questions. Clean Line is only surveying parcels where voluntary, written survey consent was granted. Clean Line will reach out to landowners in advance to notify them of the survey activities.
If you have any questions about the project or the surveys Clean Line is conducting, please call one of our project representatives toll-free at (877) 573-2851 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.