Mississippi Northern District Public Commissioner Brandon Presley will host a public hearing on Friday about a planned electrical substation that will be built near Starkville.
The public hearing, scheduled for 10 a.m. at the Oktibbeha County Chancery Courthouse, is in regards to a substation 4-County Electric Power Association is planning to build. The station, known as the Bluefield Substation, will be located southwest of Starkville.
Presley told The Dispatch the project will cost about $3.3 million and add 161,000 volts of capacity to the local power system.
“This is to help make sure they’re able to plan for future growth,” Presley said.
The Bluefield station is separate from a substation 4-County is building by the industrial park the Golden Triangle Development LINK is developing near the intersection of Highways 82 and 389 in north Starkville. That project, which will provide enough power to support tenants at the nearly 400-acre industrial park, is expected to cost about $4 million.
Still, Presley said the Bluefield Substation could help support future industrial growth around Starkville. He said the project’s notes mention Starkville and Oktibbeha County have struggled in the past to attract new industries due to a lack of power capacity.
“This is not only for residential load, but it could help support future industrial and commercial load,” he said.
Friday’s public hearing is primarily a chance for citizens to learn about the project and submit any comments they wish. Presley said the period to intervene, or formally challenge the project, has passed and the project did not garner any formal objections.
“This hearing gives the public a chance to be aware of the project and put any comments on the case’s official record,” Presley said.
When contacted, 4-County representatives declined to comment on the public hearing.
Alex Holloway was formerly a reporter with The Dispatch.