Village Board formally signs agreement for underwater cable to Shelter Island

With little fanfare, the Greenport Village Board of Trustees on Thursday unanimously agreed to authorize Mayor George Hubbard Jr. to sign two agreements allowing Long Island Power Authority and PSEG Long Island to begin construction of an underwater electric cable stretching from the Fifth Street to Shelter Island.

The project had been a source of controversy for more than a year, especially among Fifth Street residents, but there was no public comment during the portion of Thursday meeting allotted for comment on the project.

The board has allotted time for comment on the cable issue at each of its recent monthly meetings and has posted information about the project on its website.

The agreement with LIPA, which owns the transmission systems and contracts with PSEG Long Island to operate it, requires LIPA to pay a $30,000 easement fee to the village and an access fee of $1.3 million to the village for a period running from Sept. 12, 2017, when to the work is expected to begin, to May 15, 2018.

LIPA also has agreed to repave Fifth Street when the work in done, and to install an overhead circuit reinforcement from its Southold substation (west of Chapel Lane on Route 25) to Silvermere Road, a move officials say would make electric service more reliable.

“We have a contract. I’m comfortable with it, the board is comfortable with it,” Mr. Hubbard said last week, adding, “I think it’s a good deal.”

The cable wouldn’t actually provide any power to Greenport Village, which has its own power plant, and would serve Shelter Island, which has banned new power substations on the island.

In addition to Greenport Village, the Shelter Island Heights Property Owners Corporation also must signed the agreement.

The HPOC has yet to do so, and is still negotiating with LIPA, according to  HPOC general manager Stella Lagudis.

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