Illinois Power sells off its transmission

Illinois Power has agreed to sell its high-voltage electric transmission system to Trans-Elect, an independent transmission company, for $239 million.

The sale, expected to close in the first half of 2003, is subject to approvals from governmental and regulatory bodies.

Facilities included in the transaction are approximately 1,700 miles of 345,000V and 138,000V transmission lines, 20 transmission substations, and the transmission assets in an additional 40 substations. Illinois Power will retain its ownership of 38,000 miles of overhead and underground lines and associated substations that comprise the company’s electric distribution system throughout Central and Southern Illinois.

Illinois Power President Larry F. Altenbaumer said the sale demonstrates the company’s commitment to advancing competition in the electric industry and is in concert with US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) policies encouraging divestiture of the transmission business to independent companies.

Upon transfer of ownership next year, Illinois Power will contract for use of the transmission facilities on the same basis as other transmission customers.

Agreements between Illinois Power and Trans-Elect will provide for continued interconnection of the existing distribution and transmission systems and for joint use of shared facilities such as existing substations and poles that support both transmission and distribution equipment. In addition, Illinois Power will provide services to operate and maintain the transmission system under contract to Trans-Elect for an initial period of five years.

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