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Reilly names attorney to defend Cape Wind ruling

As the state's top attorney, Reilly would normally lead the board's defense against an appeal filed by the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound when the Supreme Judicial Court in Suffolk County begins its review of the appeal in the next few months, with hearings expected later in the year. Instead, Reilly, who opposes the Cape Wind plan, has recused himself and appointed a special assistant attorney general from outside his office to represent the state board against charges that its approval process contained "procedural and substantive" flaws.

Attorney General Thomas Reilly has appointed a former legal aide to defend a state board's approval of a cable that will transmit power from the 130 turbine wind farm to mainland Cape Cod.

As the state's top attorney, Reilly would normally lead the board's defense against an appeal filed by the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound when the Supreme Judicial Court in Suffolk County begins its review of the appeal in the next few months, with hearings expected later in the year.

Instead, Reilly, who opposes the Cape Wind plan, has recused himself and appointed a special assistant attorney general from outside his office to represent the state board against charges that its approval process contained "procedural and substantive" flaws.

"We appointed a [special assistant attorney general] to this case because we did not want our opposition to this project as a whole to appear to be in conflict when representing the interests of the Energy Facilities Siting Board," said Reilly spokesman Terence Burke. Politics, he said, did not play a role in the decision.

Last year, the siting board approved a petition submitted by Cape Wind and NStar to build two 18-mile 115 kilovolt underground transmission... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
Attorney General Thomas Reilly has appointed a former legal aide to defend a state board's approval of a cable that will transmit power from the 130 turbine wind farm to mainland Cape Cod.

As the state's top attorney, Reilly would normally lead the board's defense against an appeal filed by the Alliance to Protect Nantucket Sound when the Supreme Judicial Court in Suffolk County begins its review of the appeal in the next few months, with hearings expected later in the year.

Instead, Reilly, who opposes the Cape Wind plan, has recused himself and appointed a special assistant attorney general from outside his office to represent the state board against charges that its approval process contained "procedural and substantive" flaws.

"We appointed a [special assistant attorney general] to this case because we did not want our opposition to this project as a whole to appear to be in conflict when representing the interests of the Energy Facilities Siting Board," said Reilly spokesman Terence Burke. Politics, he said, did not play a role in the decision.

Last year, the siting board approved a petition submitted by Cape Wind and NStar to build two 18-mile 115 kilovolt underground transmission lines, provided that none of the proposed turbines be built in state waters, that there be no construction in Yarmouth between Memorial Day and Labor Day, and that construction in Yarmouth not begin before 7 a.m. or continue beyond 5 p.m., without permission from the town.

Opponents appealed, charging that "procedural and substantive errors" were made during the board's review. The case was referred to the full SJC Feb. 8.

Reilly's office in the past month designated Edward DeAngelo to stand in as the board's legal representation. DeAngelo, a former aide in Reilly's government bureau, left the office in 2001 and now runs a private practice in Brookline. Hesaid the terms of the agreement call for him to "act independently of the attorney general's office."

Cape Wind Associates spokesman Mark Rodgers said Monday that "it did take quite a while" for counsel to be named to represent the siting board. "It was certainly necessary and required that they need a counsel. So it's good that that happened," Rodgers said.

Opponents of the project said they had no problem with Reilly's decision.

"In this particular case, given the circumstances around it, I think they believed that it was more appropriate to have someone else represent the board," said Charles Vinick, president of the Alliance. Christopher Kallaher, the attorney from Robinson and Cole representing the Alliance, said, "I think it's in his discretion to do that. We have no particular issue one way or the other. If he'd decided to go forward representing the board himself, that would have been fine, too."

Vinick called the current suit an effort to trip up the Cape Wind effort, which has drawn either neutrality or opposition from all of the state's major elected officials.

If the alliance loses its appeal, a long series of federal and state approval mechanisms await the Cape Wind project, Vinick said. The appeal centers on insistence that rulings on the transmission lines cannot be spliced from general rulings on the generators themselves, and are not permissible in state-owned waters, he said.
   

Source: http://www2.townonline.com/...

FEB 16 2006
https://www.windaction.org/posts/1349-reilly-names-attorney-to-defend-cape-wind-ruling
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