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Regulator sets hearing on proposed Oahu-Maui power cable

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 2:45 p.m. HST, Jan 17, 2014

The state Public Utilities Commission has scheduled public meetings next week on Oahu and Maui to gather comment on a proposal to connect the electrical grids of the two islands with an undersea transmission cable.

The first meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Farrington High School Cafeteria in Honolulu. The second is scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday at the Pomaikai Elementary School Cafeteria in Kahului.

The PUC is investigating whether a transmission cable between the two islands is in the public interest. The Commission is looking at issues such as whether the benefits to utility ratepayers would exceed the cost of the cable, which the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism estimates would be around $700 million. The PUC also wants to know about potential development risks and how they would be mitigated.

The meeting will start with presentations by representatives from the PUC, DBEDT and the office of the state Consumer Advocate. Following the presentations the PUC will take comments from the audience.

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