Chesterville to hold special town meeting on NECEC

first_imgCHESTERVILLE – A special town meeting will be held July 25 to determine the town’s stance toward the New England Clean Energy Connect transmission line project, after a petition was submitted to the Select Board.Resident Megan Heikkenen submitted 121 signatures to the board at Thursday’s meeting, nearly double the 65 required to trigger a special town meeting. Sixty-five represents 10 percent of the number of Chesterville voters in the 2018 gubernatorial election.Central Maine Power’s NECEC project would link Hydro-Québec hydropower with the New England grid in response to a bid submitted to Massachusetts to bring clean energy into that state. A total of 145 miles of combined new and upgraded corridor would link a substation in Lewiston to the Canadian border through a Direct Current transmission line.Jay was the most recent town to hold a special town meeting on the NECEC project. That meeting also came as a result of a petition, after an initial vote by the Board of Selectpersons to accept 217 signatures failed to pass. That board reversed that decision at a later meeting, and the vote was held on June 24. Residents voted overwhelmingly to rescind a letter of support previously issued by the board and instead indicate the town’s opposition to the project to the relevant state agencies and CMP.Jay joined Farmington, Wilton, New Sharon and Industry as Franklin County towns that have come out in opposition to the project. The Franklin County Commissioners previously voted to rescind their support, but did not take a position in opposition.The Select Board in New Sharon voted unanimously to schedule a meeting and accompanying informational forum. Discussion prior to the Select Board’s vote included comments by John Carroll, the CMP director of communications, and Tom Saviello, a Wilton selectperson who has long opposed the NECEC project.The forum will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 25 at the town office. The special town meeting will follow at 7:30 p.m.last_img read more