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Court Order voids Antrim Wind LLC PILOT agreement with Town of Antrim New Hampshire

NH Superior Court has found that the Town of Antrim was in violation of the State's Right to Know law by conducting numerous unnoticed, non-public meetings to negotiate the PILOT agreement between the Town and Antrim Wind LLC, a company seeking to erect a wind energy facility in the Town. A portion of the ruling is provided below. The full order can be accessed by clicking on the link at the bottom of this page.

Excerpt 1

According to Galen Stearns [Antrim's Town Administrator during the PILOT Agreement], in additin to the March 7, 2011 and August 24, 2011 meetings, the Board held four other unnoticed, non-public meetings concerning the PILOT Agreement on June 21, 2011; October 25, 2011; February 15, 2012 and May 9, 2012 becasue town counsel was present. At these meetings Antrim Wind was also present. Stearns also testified that there were meetings attended by him, Selectmen Webber and Antrim Wind concerning the decommissioning of the project and cost of  construction. 

Excerpt 2

Nothing in RSA 91-A:3, II or RSA 72:74 exempts PILOT Agremments from the Right-to-know law. Contrary to the respondent's contention, the plain language of RSA 72:74 supports this conclusion. Furthermore, as the respondent concedes, none of the exemptions in RSA 91-A:3 apply to the respondents. Thus, the court finds the respondent violated the Right-to-know law by entering into non-public meetings with Antrim Wind for the PILOT Agreements on the numerous occasions detaled above.

Excerpt 3

The count GRANTS the petitioners' request to void the PILOT Agreement. As discussed above, the Board conducted numerous noticed and unnoticed, non-public meetings while negotiating the PILOT Agreement. These meetings contravened the fundemental purpose of the Right-to-know law's goal of transparent and open government. Accordingly, the court finds voiding the Agreement is warranted to redress the Right-to-know violations.

 

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Rtk Court Ruling 5 22 13

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MAY 20 2013
http://www.windaction.org/posts/37240-court-order-voids-antrim-wind-llc-pilot-agreement-with-town-of-antrim-new-hampshire
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