Livermore Falls selectmen approve resolution to extend natural gas pipeline

LIVERMORE FALLS — Selectmen joined other municipal boards in northern Androscoggin County and southern Franklin County to support extension of the natural gas pipeline that stops in Jay.

Livermore Falls selectmen voted unanimously Monday to approve a resolution to let natural gas providers know they are interested in extending a natural gas line to the town. Farmington selectmen approved the resolution Feb. 26.

Jay selectmen are scheduled to consider it at 6:30 p.m. Monday, March 11, at the Town Office.

A natural gas pipeline runs from New Hampshire through Rumford and stops at Verso Paper's Androscoggin Mill on the Riley Road in Jay.

Wilton Town Manager Rhonda Irish also has been attending meetings to discuss a possible extension of the pipeline.

Businesses along the way from Farmington to Livermore Falls are also interested to see if a natural gas company would be willing to service the area, Livermore Falls Town Manager Kristal Flagg said.

Discussions have included putting out requests to certain companies to see if they are interested in serving the area.

By supporting a resolution, selectmen would let companies know they are interested in the possibility, she said.

Flagg read the resolution at Monday's selectmen's meeting. It proclaims that natural gas is a clean and safe source of energy, and it is inexpensive and domestically produced, she read.

“The average residential customer in Maine can save about $1,5000 per year on their energy bill by using natural gas rather than oil,” Flagg read.

Bringing natural gas to the area will help reduce the region's dependence on foreign oil, reduce the carbon footprint, and encourage economic development through lower energy costs, according to the resolution.

At least 2.2 million gallons of heating oil consumed annually in the Farmington and Livermore Falls area could be replaced with cleaner, less expensive natural gas, the resolution claims.

The municipal boards are supporting the extension in order to serve as many commercial, industrial, institutional, and residential customers as is practical and possible, Flagg read.

If companies are interested and town officials believe a proposal is satisfactory for each town, it would have to be voted on by voters in those towns, she said.

There are several risks, including explosions that have been brought up in meetings, she said.

“There is good and bad to everything,” Flagg said.

It will be the intent of the group to find a company that would serve rural areas.

There would be public meetings, discussions and votes before anything is finalized.

Supporting the resolution does not commit the town to anything, she said.

PalletOne Inc., formerly known as Isaacson Lumber Co., on Route 133 in Livermore Falls is interested in a pipeline extension, Flagg said.

dperry@sunjournal.com

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Comments

Ken Perry's picture

COST

i would also question those figures on savings, and also this is something that should have been looked into long before the Towns and State spent all that time and money repaving the roads. This sounds like another waste of Tax Money. And the population of both towns is declining. Just ride around and count all the empty homes.
People can use LP. and no road work needed at all.

ERIC RODZEN's picture

Compare cost to LP not oil

Don't you think they should compare the operating cost vs LP (bottled) gas as opposed to oil? I would bet the savings are not that great vs LP. Everyone already has the option to be using LP instead of oil. If customers are not afraid of gas they may well already be using gas instead of oil. There will be a pretty hefty cost to switch regardless of what fuel is currently being used. Any LP gas appliance or burner would require a (parts and labor cost) conversion to use Natural gas. Any oil burning device would require an even bigger investment to convert or replace.

Also any company that would offer Natural gas would have to tear up our (recently repaved) streets to make it available to the customers that are located along those streets.

We already have the choice of electric, oil, or gas. Do we really need another option?

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