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I&M upgrades transmission systems as coal plants disappear

A $500 million infrastructure improvement plan over the next decade will ensure Indiana Michigan Power continues to provide a dependable source of consumer energy, officials said Tuesday.

"Powering Up Northeast Indiana" is already underway and chiefly consists of upgrading transmission systems as the nation's coal plants disappear.

I&M spokeswoman Sarah Bodner said customers will see less than a $1 increase on their electric bills. The average electric customer uses 1,000 kilowatts monthly and pays about $100.

"It will be in the cents," she said.

Bodner said the project also won't require the utility appealing to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission.

"The investment demonstrates the long-term commitment I&M and (American Electric Power) have to northeast Indiana," Paul Chodak, I&M president and chief operating officer, said in a statement. "Upgrading our transmission system is essential to ensure that we will continue to provide reliable power to households, businesses and industries in our area."

For more on this story, see Wednesday's print edition of The Journal Gazette or return to www.journalgazette.net after 3 a.m. Wednesday.

pwyche@jg.net

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