Articles from Maine

New wind farm offers big bucks to Osborn

Is the prospect of having 14 wind turbines in your community worth receiving nearly $2 million in town coffers over the next two decades? That’s the question residents of Osborn will be considering this month, as First Wind pitches a three-prong community benefits package as part of its planned third wind farm in Hancock County.
5 Feb 2015

Orland voters narrowly reject wind moratorium

In the last couple weeks, the Friends of Dodge Hill have been rallying for the moratorium. After the vote, organizer Nikki Fox wrote in an email that she’s “heartbroken” it came within five votes of passing. While she trusts the ballots were counted properly, Fox said she’ll be calling for a recount. According to Town Clerk Connie Brown, that’s allowed.
21 Jan 2015

Iberdrola weighs 100MW in Maine

In 2013, the Fletcher Mountain project was awarded a 15-year power purchase agreement with a group of four Massachusetts utilities. However, Iberdrola cancelled the contract after failing to receive corporate approval, according to a regulatory filing.
13 Jan 2015

Temporary wind power ban on Orland ballot

A 100-plus crowd turned out Wednesday evening for a public conversation about a proposed moratorium on wind power development. That moratorium, which will come to vote at a special town meeting Jan. 20, would prevent the town from accepting any wind power proposals for 180 days.
9 Jan 2015

LD 1750: A study in how special interests get their way in the Maine legislature

Democratic Rep. Ralph Chapman, D-Brooksville, who has been a critic of special interests’ influence in the Statehouse, voted against L.D. 1750. He said he’s concerned about “the degree to which legislators are corporate clients, rather than spokespeople for the people they represent. “A lot of major legislation is written by law firms representing the clients whom the legislation is designed to help.”
7 Jan 2015

No need to rush on wind power

I applauded your recent editorial concerning the leveling of playing fields concerning the wind power industry. It basically stated everything we, the residents of North Orland, have long been saying. There are copious amounts of money being proffered to any community willing to have them. Ask any selectmen if they have it in writing about the amount mentioned by the various mailings sent by the company wishing to erect the turbines. I refer to it as the “shiny sparkly” (a quote from “The Secret of Nimh”) in which the crow is dazzled by the sparkly object and easily dissuaded from the subject at hand.
4 Jan 2015

Conflict looms over CMP sister company’s plan for mountain wind farm

Plans to build a major wind project in the western Maine mountains could again test the legal separation between power generators and distribution utilities, a bedrock rule in deregulation of the state’s electric industry 15 years ago. The project is being proposed by Iberdrola Renewables, a subsidiary of Central Maine Power’s parent company. ...Although the layout is still being refined, plans call for up to 33 turbines reaching 500 feet high. 
30 Dec 2014

Atlantic Wind advances Fletcher Mountain wind project in Somerset County

The companies need regulatory approval for the transaction as a 2000 change in state law required power companies, such as CMP and Bangor Hydro Electric Co. (now Emera Maine), to divest of all power generation. That opened a competitive marketplace for power generators, and the regulatory process aims to make sure all generators are treated the same by power companies.
29 Dec 2014

Somerset County approves wind farm TIF district

Karen Bessey Pease, a resident of Lexington Township, urged commissioners to reject the TIF proposal, saying that First Wind had already proved their financial capacity to the state and that there was no need to return taxpayer money to the company. “I realize that First Wind has received their permit to build the Bingham Wind Project, but as a resident and taxpayer in the unorganized territory, I would prefer that you don’t return any money to this developer.” 
23 Dec 2014

Somerset County to decide on TIF for Bingham Wind Project

“If we don’t have a TIF, the state would tax the project and the property and use that money for the state,” said Lloyd Trafton, the county commissioner who represents the unorganized territories. “With the TIF, the state still collects the tax, but they have to return it to Somerset County.” Creation of the district would be subject to approval by the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development
17 Dec 2014

Leveling the playing field

Maine — and the nation — have had ample time to realize that the wind industry has never fulfilled its promise in the three decades since state and federal governments began doling out tax credits and subsidies. The industry continues to claim it needs special consideration and taxpayer support, even as developers have tucked millions upon millions of dollars into their own pockets.
12 Dec 2014
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