Seeking a unified position with other municipalities on where a proposed 138-kilowatt transmission line should go through Western Kenosha County was suggested by members of the Salem Town Board at a committee of the whole meeting Monday night.
Specifically, board members instructed town administrator Patrick Casey to set up a meeting with representatives of Paddock Lake and County Executive Jim Kreuser’s office.
“I think we need to get together with our other local governments, Paddock Lake, and we need to get the county in on this too,” said Supervisor Dan Campion.
American Transmission Company hosted two open houses last week to highlight the two latest proposal for a route for the approximately 25-mile transmission line from a substation in Salem west to another in Lake Geneva. The two current proposed routes were narrowed down from other earlier proposals that were made public early last year. ATC says the project will strengthen the electric transmission system to meet growing demand. Ultimately, the project must be approved by the Public Service Commission.
But while getting together was popular among board members, just what to do jointly was less clear.
“I don’t think we really know how we should approach it,” Casey said. “We have to figure out what is best for the entire town and go that way.”
A few residents also gave their view of ATC’s most recent proposed routes for the line. Residents of the Woodhaven subdivision area said they have concerns about the line passing over houses as well as impact on the nearby Conservation Club of Kenosha and that facility’s shooting ranges.
Brian Filiatreault of Salem said he has tried to interest ATC in bringing the line through his industrial park property off of Highway 83 in order to avoid Salem School as well as homes along Highway AH west of Highway 83. He also advocated persistence in dealing with ATC.
“The cheapest route is not always the best route …,” Filiatreault said. “Resistance makes a difference.”
Paddock Lake village administrator said last week that officials there also are interested in meeting on this issue with Salem and the county.