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POLICY: Maine State Chamber Opposes LD1708 for Maine Takeover of Electrical

June 11, 2021

CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATORS TODAY
AND URGE THEM TO OPPOSE LD 1708!

LD 1708An Act To Create the Pine Tree Power Company, a Nonprofit Utility, To Deliver Lower Rates, Reliability and Local Control for Maine Energy Independence, would force a $13.5 billion state takeover of Central Maine Power (CMP) and Versant Power and create a government electric utility run by a board of elected politicians.

Call your legislator today and urge them to oppose LD 1708
and stop the rush to government-controlled power.

LD 1708 would create an unprecedented government takeover of the state’s two largest property taxpayers that will raise electric rates for decades to come.

LD 1708 would also:

  • Force the takeover of CMP and Versant Power, which is estimated to cost the state $13.5 billion and raise electricity costs by $4.7 billion over the next 30 years.
  • Trigger what is expected to be a decade of legal disputes that will cost the state tens of millions of dollars in staff and legal fees financed entirely by electric ratepayers.
  • Put a board of elected politicians in charge of our electric grid—which has led to declining service quality and even corruption in places where it’s been tried, including the Long Island Power Authority on which LD 1708 is modeled.
  • 2020 study directed by the Maine Public Utilities Commission found that there are more questions than answers—and Governor Mills has said the Legislature needs to answer those questions before sending this complex issue to voters.
  • LD 1708 would let government-controlled electric power supporters skip the typical step of collecting 60,000 signatures to put the issue on the ballot, and instead send it to a referendum vote in less than six months.
  • Although the title of LD 1708 says it will form a “non-profit company” called Pine Tree Power, the words of the bill actually create a quasi-government entity run by elected politicians.  
  • The Bangor Daily News (5.23.21) recommends more study in lieu of passing the bill.

PLEASE CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATORS TODAY
AND URGE THEM TO OPPOSE LD 1708!

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