August 10, 2022
Contact: Willy Ritch [email protected] | 207-841-8400
Good afternoon reporters and editors — I wanted to flag this post from the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine this week. In the post, SAM announced their opposition to the proposed seizure of Central Maine Power and Versant to form a government-run power company. SAM’s statement cited their concern with having elected politicians running the grid and making policies that might change with each election.
We expect the same activists to try and stack the political Board that will make decisions on behalf for the government run utility. If this referendum is successful, this new politically driven government run utility will control the most sophisticated network of trails in Maine.
In addition, SAM cited the potential loss of access to the thousands of acres of land owned by CMP and Versant.
We remain very concerned with the potential negative impacts and uncertainty related to public access if CMP and Versant are forced to relinquish tens of thousands of miles of power lines that serve as access for hunting, fishing, ATV and snowmobile trails and outdoor recreational opportunities.
If this referendum succeeded the open public access, we now experience and take for granted, would be vulnerable to the whims of each legislative session and a politically chosen non-profit Board. The thousands of non-formal agreements that landowners and land users, with these two companies for public access, would be in question.
SAM said its membership overwhelmingly opposes the proposed seizure: When polled less than a year ago, our members said at a rate of 5 to 1 that they oppose the policy.