- GridLiance Holdco LP announced this week that it has completed the acquisition of Valley Electric Association's high voltage transmission system, including more than 160 miles of 230-kV transmission lines and related substation equipment.
- The deal also included a 230-kV transmission line project to physically connect the VEA system to the rest of the California Independent System Operator.
- Member-owners of VEA will see payments of almost $18 million related to the sale, including checks for $579 owners are now receiving.
A sale price on VEA's transmission system was not revealed, but officials at the association say members netted far in excess of what it cost to build.
In a statement, VEA Chief Executive Officer Thomas Husted said the cooperative took an $80 million asset and sold it for far more than it cost to build and will continue to operate, maintain and manage.
“What’s nice about that is, that’s all new money,” Husted said. “That’s not money that’s already in this community that’s being recycled. That’s $17.5 million of brand new money coming from elsewhere into this community, and you’re going to see it.”
Checks for $579 were going out last week to more than 17,000 members, totaling about $10 million. A second round of $7.5 million in patronage capital checks will also be issued, but in amounts that will vary based on how much and how long member-owners contributed to the system.
The deal will allow VEA to expand its broadband communications network, ensure reliable power, provide rate stability, pay down debt, and share proceeds with members.
"There is great potential here for project development that will improve reliability and provide Nevada and California greater access to low-cost renewable energy," Calvin Crowder, president and CEO of GridLiance, said in a statement.