Cheaper electricity could come at a cost - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Cheaper electricity could come at a cost

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MUNFORD, TN -

(WMC-TV) - Clean Line Energy in Oklahoma wants to bring cheaper electricity to West Tennessee.  But some in Munford say the savings come at a cost.

Munford's population has grown 25 percent in the past 10 years, but residents say cheaper electricity could actually drive people away.

"It's going to affect my business and some property development we have in selling houses," said Dr. John Turner.

Dr. Turner lives and works in Munford.

He is concerned about a recent proposal from Clean Line Energy that brings 100 foot power lines right through downtown.

"I don't think people will build $200,000 and $300,000 next to high voltage lines," Turner said.

Clean Line Energy's plan would bring wind powered electricity to rural West Tennessee, through northern Arkansas.

It's a 700 mile project that would end in northeast Shelby County.

One proposed route takes these power lines near Munford's downtown business and residential district.

Munford's mayor is against the project, saying it could affect thousands of homes and their property values.

"You can't take 3,000 acres out of the town's developmental property and expect us to grow," added Munford Mayor Dwayne Cole.

Community meetings were held earlier this year.

Residents had the chance to sign an online petition against the route.

Clean Line officials say the project is now in the hands of U.S. Department of Energy.

Munford's mayor says he hopes the proposed power line route moves a bit further south so that his town can continue to grow.

"We can't have that, we can't have that cloud hanging over our head with potential development," Mayor Cole explained.

The second proposed route takes the power lines near the Tipton-Shelby County line. They would then connect to existing lines near Rosemark.

Clean Line Energy says this is a long term project and nothing has been decided.

For more information on Clean Line Energy, click here: http://www.plainsandeasterncleanline.com/site/home

To view the proposed map, click here: http://ftpcontent4.worldnow.com/wmctv/Munfordmap.pdf

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