Question 1 CMP Corridor debate Oct. 14

Tue, 10/05/2021 - 8:30am

The next Lincoln County Community Conversations event will take place on Thursday, Oct. 14 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. The panel discussion focuses on the November referendum Question 1 in order to provide voters “Views from Both Ends of the Central Maine Power Corridor.” The speaker lineup and participation details can be found here, as they become available: https://lincolncountydemocrats.com/communityconversations. The event will also be recorded and can be watched at the same website address.

Because this event cannot be held in person and to keep the online audio uninterrupted, the audience should submit questions and succinct comments ahead of time through an online form found at https://lincolncountydemocrats.com/questions.

Supporters and opponents of Question 1, a citizen’s initiative on the Nov. 2 ballot, have Maine voters pitted against each other in an all out tug-o-war. The question reads, “Do you want to ban the construction of high-impact electric transmission lines in the Upper Kennebec Region and to require the Legislature to approve all other such projects anywhere in Maine, both retroactively to 2020, and to require the Legislature, retroactively to 2014, to approve by a two-thirds vote such projects using public land?”

A "Yes" vote will ban the construction of the New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC), colloquially known as the CMP Corridor, and any other high-impact electric transmission lines in the Upper Kennebec Region. It will make it so all construction of high-impact electric transmission lines in Maine has to be approved by the State Legislature. If the transmission lines are on public lands, a yes vote would require a supermajority in the Legislature in order for construction to be approved. These provisions would apply retroactively to Sept. 16, 2020, meaning that all projects previously approved within that time frame would become subject to review and reapproval of or denial by the Legislature. Finally, a yes vote would require the Legislature to review and reapprove or deny the use of public lands for any poles, transmission lines and facilities, landing strips, pipelines and railroad tracks, retroactively to Sept. 16, 2014.

A "No" vote would allow the construction of the CMP corridor and similar projects to continue as permitted in the Upper Kennebec Region. It would uphold the status quo of not requiring state legislative approval for the construction of high-impact electric transmission lines in the state and not requiring two-thirds of the State Legislature to approve the use of public lands for any poles, transmission lines and facilities, landing strips, pipelines and railroad tracks. 

Event organizer, Jan John of Bristol, shares, “There is a lot to this question and we want to use our Community Conversations forum to bring together representatives from both sides of this issue. We hope that our panel will help us unpack it all, calmly, and present facts and figures so that the voters of Lincoln County are able to make informed choices on election day. This vote has the potential to set precedents for generations to come.” 

The public is welcome to attend Lincoln County Community Conversations events which are opportunities for constructive dialog sponsored by the Lincoln County Democratic Committee. This series of community forums and discussions on topics of concern to Lincoln County residents was founded in the belief that friendly discussion and sharing of facts and opinions is a bridge to a stronger community. To sign up for our email list, please complete the form found here https://lincolncountydemocrats.com/communityconversations or for more information, please contact John at janjohn1us@yahoo.com or 207-529-6502.