Articles filed under Legal from Vermont
Thomas Melone’s solar projects planned for the Apple Hill neighborhood in Bennington have so far generated more litigation than electrons.
Swanton Wind’s developers are getting a partial refund of their $100,000 regulatory application fee, and they won’t have to pay other parties’ attorney fees should they decide to renew the project. That’s according to a Vermont Supreme Court ruling issued Dec. 21.
Depositions began last week in the case over whether wind developer David Blittersdorf violated state regulations by putting up a wind test tower on his Kidder Hill property without a certificate of public good.
Wind energy developer David Blittersdorf is intensifying his fight to avoid being found in violation of state regulations and being penalized for having a wind test tower without a permit on his Kidder Hill property. ...This week, the Irasburg select board rejected an undisclosed offer by Blittersdorf that if accepted would have taken the town out of the hearings over the alleged violation.
Brouha’s case involves his argument that Condition 8 of the CPG has been violated “…because indoor sound levels measured at Mr. Brouha’s residence exceeded the 30 dBA criterion…based on testing conducted by his expert, Noise Pollution Clearinghouse, and, according to Mr. Brouha, confirmed by the Department’s (Department of Public Service) expert.”
The “Legislature can change the balance between state and local regulation as it deems appropriate,” the majority opinion said. “In the absence of such a statutory change, the Board has the final policy decision. Under the deferential standard of review, we must uphold that policy choice.
In the summary judgment request, Anderson incorporates several years of public record in the Brouha case leading up to the DPS case being opened, after DPS’s own consultant determined that the wind facility’s noise standards may have been exceeded.
“As far as what we know today, there is no so-called renewable project in this state that has not sold its RECs out of state,” IRA spokesman Michael Sanville told Vermont Watchdog. “That being (the case), there should not be any company within the state that’s advertising any of their energy generation as ‘renewable.’”
The attorney general's office has closed its criminal investigation of renewable energy critic Annette Smith, opting not to weigh in on whether she practiced law without a license because it said the only relevant case law is too outdated. In a news release Monday, Attorney General William Sorrell's office did not clearly exonerate Smith of accusations that she performed duties normally reserved for attorneys. Rather, it said the definition of "practicing law" must recognize the various forms of advocacy practiced today.
A critic of Big Renewables in Vermont is free from the threat of criminal prosecution after the attorney general’s office dropped an investigation launched in response to complaints from an anonymous green-energy developer. Standing before a large crowd, Annette Smith, surrounded by her attorney and victims of green-energy development, thanked supporters and the anonymous developer whose complaints against her backfired when Vermonters rallied to her cause.
The Vermont Attorney General’s Office has closed its investigation into a complaint about Annette Smith’s actions in various proceedings before the Public Service Board (PSB). The Office has closed the investigation without further action. "This Office considers the matter closed."
An attorney for environmental advocate Annette Smith has asked the Vermont attorney general’s office to cease the criminal investigation it has launched against her.
“It’s entirely politically motivated,” Sleigh said in an interview Friday. “The people who have found Annette’s opposition to their desires frustrating are now attempting to use the government as their surrogate to shut her up. That’s about as low-down political as you can get.”
Environmental activist Annette Smith was notified last week by the Vermont attorney general’s office that she was under criminal investigation for allegedly practicing law without a license, Smith said.
Yesterday the "Top Story" on caledonianrecord.com was a wire report titled "Thorn in Side of Powerful Faces Criminal Probe."
TARGETED: A Burlington-based law firm with ties to green-energy CEO David Blittersdorf has been investigating Annette Smith, who recently found out she is the target of a criminal probe by the Vermont Attorney General office.
Annette Smith has been fighting the power for more than 15 years, tenaciously opposing energy projects she believes harm the environment or quality of life in Vermont. Now she is the target of a criminal investigation ...her only offense is too often annoying a green power industry that boasts deep pockets. "Even though this is a preposterous charge, and will likely be thrown out, its purpose will be fulfilled: to chill anyone's free speech rights who dares to question the powerful in Montpelier," attorney Deborah Bucknam wrote in an op-ed.
The attorney general is siding with Vermont’s large law firms and big lobbyists to deprive opponents of industrial wind the advice of a person who knows the intricacies of the proceedings and can help those who cannot afford the high-priced lawyers the developers can. And make no mistake. Even though this is a preposterous charge and will likely be thrown out, its purpose will be fulfilled: to chill anyone’s free speech rights who dares to question the powerful in Montpelier.
I recently read that the Vermont attorney general’s office is investigating Annette Smith of Vermonters for a Clean Environment. The purpose of the investigation is supposedly for “possible unauthorized practice of law.”
Debate continues to swirl around how well wind project developers monitor the sound their turbines produce. One pending investigation into possible noise violations focuses on towers atop a ridge in Sheffield.