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IOWA CAPITOL DIGEST
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IOWA CAPITOL DIGEST

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A roundup of state government and Capitol news items of interest:

UNDERGROUND ELECTRIC LINE: Officials with the Iowa Utilities Board said Thursday they had received an application for an underground electric transmission line — a proposed high-voltage, direct-current line that would be a first in Iowa.

Officials said SOO Green HVDC Link Project Co. filed a petition to build a 525- kilovolt direct current line that would extend through eight counties and transfer energy generated in Iowa from Mason City to Plano, Illinois.

The proposed line would go through Allamakee, Cerro Gordo, Chickasaw, Clayton, Dubuque, Floyd, Jackson and Winneshiek counties.

State law requires meetings in transmission line cases to provide affected landowners information about the project.

Two of those meetings were held March 13, but the remaining in-person meetings were postponed because of the pandemic and then held as webinars May 4 to 8.

To obtain a franchise, SOO Green must show the proposed line serves a public use and “represents a reasonable relationship to an overall plan of transmitting electricity in the public interest.”

Utility board members will review statements from affected property owners, including those subject to eminent domain proceedings, and other evidence before rendering a decision on the proposed underground line.

More information is available on the utility board’s website.

NEW TEST IOWA CLINIC: State officials say they are scheduled to open a second Test Iowa clinic site in Dubuque County on Monday.

The new site will be located at the Grand River Medical Group Respiratory Clinic, 1400 University Ave. in Dubuque.

It will be the second Test Iowa site in Dubuque.

The Epic Health and Wellness Clinic, 1075 Cedar Cross Rd., operates a drive-thru test site.

Locations and hours of operation for all test sites in Iowa can be found at testiowa.com or coronavirus.iowa.gov.

FEMA CENTERS TO CLOSE: Officials with the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced Thursday it will close the FEMA Disaster Recovery Center in Marshall County at 6 p.m. Oct. 3.

The center in Cedar Rapids, at 950 Rockford Rd. SW, closes at 6 p.m. Saturday.

Those affected by the Aug. 10 derecho can still get help with FEMA applications through the FEMA app for smartphones; at DisasterAssistance.gov; or by calling 1-(800) 621-3362 between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m.

Iowans in 11 counties — Benton, Boone, Cedar, Jasper, Linn, Marshall, Polk, Poweshiek, Scott, Story and Tama — have until Oct. 19 to register for disaster assistance.

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