$161M loan for Montana transmission line approved

AP News
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Posted: Nov 19, 2009 6:04 PM

Federal regulators have signed off on a $161 million loan to a Canadian company that's building a 214-mile power transmission line between Alberta and Montana.

Construction began earlier this month on the 230-kilovolt Montana-Alberta Tie Line, which will run between Great Falls and Lethbridge Alberta.

On Thursday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the loan from the Western Area Power Administration to a subsidiary of Tonbridge Power _ the line's Toronto-based developer.

The public financing, provided through federal stimulus money, will cover most of the project's estimated $215 million price tag. WAPA will get a one-twelfth ownership as part of the loan agreement.

A dedication ceremony for the transmission line is planned for Nov. 30 in Great Falls. The line is expected to be operational by late 2010.