GridLiance, an independent transmission company, and the City of Winfield, Kansas announced a long-term partnership to jointly-own and improve the city’s transmission facilities. Under the agreement, GridLiance will acquire a 65 percent ownership stake in 29-miles of Winfield’s 69-kV transmission line and terminal equipment within five substations and invest in a needed reliability upgrade. Winfield will continue to perform operations and maintenance field services for the jointly-owned transmission facilities.
“We are delighted to be partnering with the City of Winfield and Kansas Power Pool (KPP) on this acquisition and the transmission upgrades, which support GridLiance’s mission to invest in transmission infrastructure and improve grid reliability,” says Calvin Crowder, president and CEO of GridLiance. “This acquisition emphasizes our capabilities in working with municipal electric utilities to develop solutions that can address their unique financial, reliability, and transmission operational needs.
Winfield Mayor Ron Hutto says he is excited to be working with GridLiance on the transaction, which will benefit the entire community.
“While we will continue to own a 35 percent stake in these transmission facilities, GridLiance will provide a partner to share in the significant financial responsibility for future upgrades and operations and maintenance, while providing Winfield with the financial flexibility to invest in transmission upgrades at our option," he says. "This ensures we will be able to improve the reliability of our electric transmission infrastructure while allowing us to focus our financial resources on our generation and distribution assets. It is important for our citizens to know that it will continue to be Winfield employees, in Winfield trucks, working on the transmission system that service Winfield’s customers.”
This is the first transaction developed under a co-development agreement between the Kansas Power Pool (KPP) and GridLiance to advance transmission projects for KPP and its member cities, which includes Winfield.
“Working with GridLiance is consistent with our municipal mission and values. In implementing our partnership strategy and moving forward with this transaction, we are addressing Winfield’s transmission-related financial, reliability and resiliency issues for the benefit of Winfield customers,” says Mark Chesney, CEO and general manager of KPP.
The transaction is subject to customary federal and state regulatory approvals and is expected to close by the end of 2019.