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PUC Delays Decision On Frisco's Plan To Bury Power Lines

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FRISCO (CBS11) -  An agreement to bury some controversial power lines may not be enough for regulators.

The Public Utility Commission raised several concerns about burying lines along Main Street and held off on a decision Thursday.

The fence around Donna Denley's backyard only blocks so much. She and many of her neighbors have worried for years about the prospect of building huge towers along Main Street to hold power lines.

"To really just put up all these huge power lines. It's really going to detract from the value of our homes," Denley said.

But at the Public Utility Commission meeting in Austin, homeowners were warned that better not be their only argument.

"I'm just cautioning y'all that I'm not swayed by transmission lines being close to houses because that would mean we'd have to bury almost every transmission line in Texas," Public Utility Commissioner Donna Nelson told the crowd.

Dozens of homeowners filled the meeting some wearing t-shirts that read, "Bury The Lines." We reached coalition leader Meredith Held via FaceTime. She says the commissioners asked them a number of technical questions about the underground option.

"One of the things was, well what happens if a line breaks underground? You're going to have to dig up all of Main Street, and Mayor Maso said, no every 500 feet there's a way to access that particular segment of the line," Held said.

She feels good about the chance to address commissioners' concerns in the weeks ahead. The PUC will make a decision when it meets again at the end of April.

"So I really believe that they will make a good choice, and that they'll have the accessibility. Some engineer will go in and know exactly how they can get in and make those changes and corrections when needed," Denley said.

Frisco released a statement from the Mayor saying they will spend the next few weeks addressing the PUC's questions.

Some of the homeowners say they plan to also attend the meeting in April. Even though they won't be able to testify, they hope to be there as a show of support.

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