Judge denies JCP&L right to move forward with reliability project

Posted: Updated:
HAZLET -

A New Jersey judge has ruled against Jersey Central Power and Light and won’t allow it to move forward with a proposed reliability project.

The project was controversial when it was first proposed, with citizens in five Monmouth County communities rallying together to fight it.

JCP&L’s planned to install a transmission line along a 10-mile stretch of New Jersey Transit tracks that spanned Aberdeen to Red Bank. But many residents say that they did not want to live so close to transmission lines, and formed the group Residents Against Giant Electric, or RAGE.

The group is celebrating their courtroom win Friday.

“Nobody beats the utilities. This win is a lot bigger than these five towns,” says RAGE member Terri Vilardi.

In a letter, Judge Gail Cookson said, “JCP&L failed to give much more than short shrift to alternative corridors and ignored non-transmission solutions entirely. An examination of the details, inclusive of the costs, of the alternative routes was never undertaken.”

A spokesperson for JCP&L says, “Any alternatives to the proposed project would cause significantly greater disruption to the community, environmental impacts and project costs."

Judge Cookson’s decision will now go before the Board of Public Utilities, where it will either be accepted, rejected or modified.

JCP&L says that they will review the decision before determining the next step.

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