Franklin Countys First News

Letter to the Editor: NECEC, the good, the bad and the ugly

Jay, in a nutshell, represents how the CMP corridor has gone from day one. Timeline: CMP approaches Jay select board and gets them to send a letter of support without any public discussion or objective research. Townspeople wake up to the facts of the NECEC and request a vote. Select board member Judy Diaz goes on social media and television with a pro-corridor ad. CMP coaches Jay select board via email on what to say and how to say it to townspeople (to sound sincere). Select board denies signature petition to bring the issue to a town vote. Outrage follows, select board agrees to allow it to go to a town vote. Rep. Tina Riley hosts balanced forum in Jay to help people better understand the issues before the vote. Hydro Quebec agrees to send a rep but backs out and sends a lobbyist instead. HQ lobbyist post demeaning comments about the no corridor folks at the forum. Energy lawyer at the meeting goes on and on about the No side being funded by “dark money” (as opposed to CMP spending millions of ratepayer dollars to fool people with their “Mainers for Clean Energy and New England Clean Energy Connect ads?) Meanwhile CMP/Avangrid/Iberdola rep. Thorn Dickenson tells investors in NY the No people up in Maine are “like Russians meddling in the elections.” Today, the CMP billing scandal finally makes headlines, while our governor repeats the talking points of Energy lawyer Buxton.

The Good: Grassroots opposition to the corridor is informed, determined and making incredible progress in every corner of the state. This is not a done deal.

The Bad: From Day one, this has been a bad deal for Maine, both economically and environmentally.

The Ugly: The perception of conflict haunts every aspect of this deal. Former governors on the board at Avangrid. Western Mountains and Rivers, a shell nonprofit funded by CMP has current governor Mills brother Peter as a founding director. The Conservation Law Foundation changes from opposed in NH to supporting in Maine as directors’ brother is added to the Avangrid team. Serendipitous emails, false claims, smear campaign against our grassroots opposition. It goes on and on.

So who do you trust on this? The folks in line to make BILLIONS for an elective merchant transmission line, based on false pretenses, who have been lying to you all along. Or us? The people who genuinely care about the environment and Maines future.

Town votes this week in Jay, Anson and Moscow. Lets keep this momentum going.

Darryl Wood
New Sharon

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13 Responses »

  1. Just a side note about issues with CMP. I have owned a small home on fairbanks road for almost 5 years.
    We are seldom there so not much electric usage, only oil furnace and high efficiency heatpump water
    Heater, CLP light bulbs. The monthly electric bills are always $45-$65. My most recent May-June billing
    Is $140. My wife called to ask why. Guess what??? The electric usage went crazy high during the middle
    Of the nights of May 2, 3, 5,6. Hmmmmmm???? Must have been aliens (UFO types) hooking up to my
    House during the night to recharge their space crafts. Anyhow, i spoke with a polite CMP rep and he looked
    At my previous years and determined that my May billing was 73% higher than normal and he offered to
    "Set aside" a portion of my bill equal to that 73% overcharge. But he only offered me a "set aside" of $64
    Which is 46% of that $140 invoice (according to my Skowhegan High school and UMO math training). I
    Asked him why he was using the newer "funny mathematics" and he explained that he was using the new
    Math approved by the PUC. Well, there you have it. The PUC is assisting CMP and they are using the new
    Modern technology and mathematics to solve these problems and the rate payers of Maine are in trouble.
    Am i crazzzzy???

    Hey Governor Mills, how about you spend more time digging into the billing problems at CMP!!!! Sick your
    New attorney general on them!!! And while you're at it, send one of those old school mathematics PHd
    Folks over to the PUC to help them with their calculations. That would be great!!!

  2. How can anyone support the antics of CMP?
    UNLESS they have a "vested" interest.

    No Corridor
    No windmills
    No electric friggin charging stations
    Go the hell away!!!!!

  3. UPDATE: Jay and Anson voted to overwhelmingly to oppose NECEC on Monday and Tuesday, joining every other community that has come up for a public vote. Including Farmington just after Janet Mills gave her pro corridor speech. Wilton 162-1, New Sharon 84-4, Jay something like 280-10, Anson 98-12, Moscow, on deck.

    I have never seen numbers like this on any political project If you asked 100 people if the sky was blue the percentages would be less than Wilton and New Sharon.

    Mike D.- the crazy part of that is- we all understand mistakes can be made. Its the fact that CMP is blaming the home and business owners that reeks out loud.

  4. Mike,

    I'd be very surprised if those spaceships weren't manned by Russians.

    All kidding aside. The billing "problems" that CMP is perpetrating because of a lack of, well, knowledge, is causing different degrees of problems for some people all over the state.
    A few of us can afford to be, well, overcharged, while others cannot. The whole fiasco is unacceptable, as our Governor has stated. And as I have stated before, why our Governor would allow a billion dollar project to be entrusted to a company that is doing something "unacceptable" is disheartening. After all, what's next on the CMP "mistake" list?

  5. AGREED!

    Go the hell away!


  6. It's funny reading about people who have a problem with CMP and try to resolve it with somebody in God knows where who reads from a scripted notebook on how to solve a problem they aren't authorized to solve. Yet for all the complaining people do, they don't have their CMP delivered power turned off. If I was unhappy with the service provided, I wouldn't use that service any longer. but all these hypocrites curse CMP on second, and cook supper with CMP the next. I might take the naysayers a little more seriously, if they had better convictions.

  7. CMP..Hello you have reached CMP, how may I direct your call?

    GOV...Yes, the Governor wants to speak with you.

    CMP..Yes, Go ahead.

    GOV... You guys are killing me here !! I've keeled over to you guys on the corridor and now this billing mess!! People are upset.

    CMP... We don't care about them. Neither have you. There is no problem. Bye.

  8. CMP has been more than dishonest to the public about smart meters and there is nothing about this new deal that automatically absolves them from their choice to be dishonest to the public. If I steal from you it's called stealing not a billing mistake. If someone makes a billing mistake then they return the over billed amount and don't tell them it's their fault and they are keeping the money. That saying comes to mind, "Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice shame on me.". Plain and simple, do we let them fool us again because they are the only transporter of electricity dependency in ME?

    To Hrtless: Your name fake say a lot about you. Your comments are obviously not without self interest and prosperity in mind. Other than installing a home solar and wind system, there are no other options for power delivery available to us and to say unplug if you don't like it is the childish equivalent of, Move if you don;t like the tax rates. How about CMP just uses more ethical business practices instead of forcing a mentality of maximum quick profits by stealing from customers and forcing a project that no one wants. We are dependent on honest delivery and when the monopoly is not honest, the people (customers) must make it clear that this is not how it must be. We cannot change garages or oil companies like in the free competitive market. If I don't like your oil business then I have options to business elsewhere. If you are going to argue then please learn logic and stop rationalizing your target point with false and exaggerated reasoning. By the way, I own the property next door to you and I'm opening a pig farm down wind from your house. Glad I don't have to care what you think about it or be regulated in any way that prevents me from achieving my golden dream. Thanks.

  9. HB, since the pig farm is downwind of you you’re all set.

  10. @ I can only imagine.....
    Hahahaha, sounds about right!

  11. Sam, I, like every other commentator in this section, speaks only for themselves, and serves their own self interests. People have choices, CMP doesn't recruit new customers by putting a gun to the heads of those customers. People use CMP because it is convenient, and people can't be inconvenienced to use other means. And moving because you don't like the tax rate, isn't childish, it's true. You should try living in reality, the real world isn't Burger King, you can't have it your way. We live in a capitalist economy, get some investors and start your own power delivery system or similar to Electricity Maine, just don't do what they did to get themselves suspended.

  12. HB,
    " People have choices ", " you can't have it your way ".
    Which is it????

  13. Hrtless - You know that virtually all Mainers are tethered to utility power by necessity - we have no choice but to accept the one supplier available. Because electric utilities are a monopoly, charged with operating our most important infrastructure, they are subject to strict oversight and control by... wait for it... the government. And that is, sir, what government is for, first and foremost - to protect its citizens.

    The fact that CMP completely screwed up the smart meter system / billing part of their responsibility and continue to deny there is any problem should invite more scrutiny and pressure from the [quasi-government] PUC. Meanwhile, the owners of this "Maine" utility (namely Spanish Iberdrola/Avangrid - heavily invested in by Qataris [look it up for yourself]) have decided to invest in a sham "green energy" project that has just one goal - their personal financial gain. Nothing wrong with profit for a business, mind you, but CMP is not a not a WalMart or McDonalds. Their executives aim to line their pockets at the cost of further destruction of Western Maine. Most concerning is that the project IS NOT NEEDED to improve Maine's electrical grid, which has been upgraded to the tune of well over a billion dollars recently (you may recall - we are paying for it each month). The few Mainers who do not care about the future of Maine's woodlands and mountains, and support profiteering by the Spaniards, Qataris, top CMP execs, and a few of Maine's political elites, are trying to suppress opposition by demeaning them and declaring it a "done deal". But those of us who oppose it are growing in number rapidly, are motivated, and we are determined to hold our elected decision makers responsible. Hold on.