Sierra Pacific drops lawsuit against Storey County

Sierra Pacific Power Co. has dropped its lawsuit against Storey County over a controversial substation and power line intended for the Mark Twain area.

Company spokeswoman Faye Anderson said the utility and the county have tentatively agreed on a new location and Sierra Pacific will withdraw its request for judicial review that was to be heard in First District Court on Monday.

"We have worked with Storey County and we have found an alternative location that is that is suitable to both us and the county," she said. "We have withdrawn our petition for judicial review, and we're going to concentrate our efforts on obtaining a special use permit for the substation."

She added that the company would probably have to seek a zoning change for the area, believed to be several miles east of the original site.

"We'll be working with the new line alignment, and we'll be working with private property owners," she said.

Storey County Building and Planning Administrator Dean Haymore said there was an agreement in principle for a location, though no individual parcel has been specified.

Earlier this month the company sent a letter to Storey County officials proposing to move the substation location several miles to the east.

It would be called the Blackhawk substation and have a new 345,000-volt power line connecting it with the Tracy Power Plant in northern Storey County. It will also include a new 120,000-volt transmission line that will tap into an existing line that services Virginia City, Carson City, Mark Twain and Dayton.

The county commission rejected the utility's request for a special-use permit to install an Emma substation in Mark Twain in August, after more than 100 Mark Twain residents attended several meetings opposed to a substation in their neighborhood.

That site, on land owned by the Borda family, was the company's first choice, and it has initiated eminent domain proceedings to acquire the property that have not yet been settled. Anderson said she didn't know what effect the most recent action would have on those proceedings.

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 881-7351.


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