PSEG says they’ll decide on how to power Shelter Island

02/27/2015 3:53 PM |
Long Island Power Authority workers dig the intersection of Bay Shore Road and Island View Lane in Greenport. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

Long Island Power Authority workers dig the intersection of Bay Shore Road and Island View Lane in Greenport. (Credit: Carrie Miller, file)

PSEG officials have reached no decision about whether to push forward with a substation on Shelter Island or cables linking the Island to the North Fork.

But when they do, how to proceed  their call to make, they say — even in the face of community opposition.

The decision will be informed by which project provides the most reliable service to Shelter Island and the least risk, said a PSEG spokesman, Jeffrey Weir.

“I’m fine with that,” Shelter Island Supervisor Jim Dougherty said, declining further comment until he has received more information from PSEG.

He expects to hear from them within the next couple of weeks, he said.

Southold Town residents, who took the brunt of the punishment in noise, dirt and disruption to their lives when the cable project was attempted in 2013, have been vocal enough that Supervisor Scott Russell threatened to take PSEG to court if it made a second attempt at that project.

But if the company decided a cable is the best solution to ensuring reliable power for the Island, it has the legal right to proceed, Mr. Weir said.

Editor’s note: Some information was deleted from an earlier version of this story, due to an attribution error.

Mr. Russell said Friday he’s already made it clear to PSEG officials that the town would not allow the company to set up a construction site on the mainland.

PSEG would need to obtain easements from Southold Town to use public road ends during the construction process, something Mr. Russell said is not going to happen.

“Southold simply isn’t going to grant those easements,” he said. “I am not going to pretend to be a judge, nor should they.”

Many Shelter Island residents who visited a Jamesport substation last July were adamantly against siting a similar facility in a residential neighborhood adjacent to the Historical Society on South Ferry Road.

As for the route of the cabling, the original attempt from Crescent Beach to Greenport remains the most viable since it’s the shortest distance between the two towns. 

What’s more, PSEG already knows the makeup of the soil and rocks on that route, said Vincent Frigeria, a PSEG district manager. 

Most of Shelter Island’s power comes through an aged cable on the north side delivering 11 megawatts, while a cable from the south delivers three megawatts, Mr. Weir said.

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with Cyndi Murray