Illinois regulators OK major transmission line

Regulators have signed off on a new transmission line that'd cut through central Illinois.

The (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports the Illinois Commerce Commission approved all but 30 miles of Ameren's Illinois Rivers Project during a meeting Tuesday.

The $1 billion, 380-mile transmission line would run through 19 counties, traveling from Quincy to the Indiana border. It'd affect about 8,400 landowners.

The utility says the project's meant to improve reliability and market efficiency, while also meeting increasing electricity demands.

The ICC says it still wants more information before signing off on a 30-mile stretch of the project that'd run between Pawnee and Pana. An Ameren Transmissions spokesman says the utility is reviewing the decision but will likely ask for a rehearing on the excluded stretch.

Construction could begin in 2016.