Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Bipole III won't be part of PUB's Hydro review

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The Manitoba Metis Federation has lost its battle -- for now -- to include the construction of the $3.28-billion Bipole III transmission line at a special hearing examining Manitoba Hydro's plan to build two new dams and a transmission line to run to Minnesota.

In a decision by the Public Utilities Board, sections of a consultant's report concerning the $3.28-billion Bipole III, to run from northern Manitoba to Winnipeg, will be removed because they do not fall under the province's terms of reference for the hearing, called a Needs For and Alternatives to Review.

In its March 4 order, the five-member panel said most portions of the report by consultant Whitfield Russell Associates dealing with Bipole III will be struck from the record of the hearing.

"By this order, the board further disallows a portion of costs to the MMF and its expert witness with respect to time spent addressing issues found to be out of scope," the PUB said.

Lawyers for Manitoba Hydro had asked for the sections of the report to be struck out and that a portion of funding to the MMF for the report ($150,662) be withheld.

The PUB will make that decision at the end of the hearing. It's now scheduled to end the week of May 26.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition March 6, 2014 A9

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