No wind power, no trails

At the request of private landowner A&B Forestry, three area ATV clubs and two snowmobile clubs assembled to hear a message delivered by the landowner concerning the proposed Rumford wind power project by First Wind.

As someone who would benefit from the project, the landowner is upset with the anti-wind ordinance that will be offered to Rumford voters in November. The landowner is urging those who recreate on the 4,500 acres to defeat the ordinance so that an ordinance that will both protect the citizens of Rumford and allow the project to proceed can be developed.

They explained that their family has always allowed the public to recreate on their private land, including hunting, fishing, snowmobiling, ATVing and hiking and, in return, want folks to support the project. They are prepared to post their land if the project is defeated.

This has been a very difficult decision for them, but as the landowner stated, "Why should our land remain open for the enjoyment of those who are not willing to support our need to earn a living with the very same property? This is our land, we are making payments on it, and if people don't want to see it developed, then all they need to do is buy it from us."

I am acutely aware that because of the size and location of different parcels, all owned by this family, that rerouting the trails for snowmobiling and ATVing would be very difficult, if not impossible.

Mike Worthley, Roxbury

President, Roxbury ATV Club

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 's picture

bull

Property rights whiners... the large landowners reap tax breaks with "tree growth". Their breaks are made up by the rest of us. We pay more so they can get a tax break. We therefore have rights too. If they want to post their land, fine. They should start paying the same tax rate as everyone else. The same tactic was used here in Lincoln. The campowners did not dare say anything or the leaseholders would up their rates or stop taking care of the roads. The threats were not made directly by the big shots but by their ancillaries . The town of Lincoln was threatened by a lawsuit by FoulWind also. Innuendo has a way of working as well as a direct threat. This crap in Rumford is not just about Rumford. It will be seen and heard for miles . You folks get to decide for your community but Maine is ours, not Boston's. You claim "buy the land" then cry when R.Quimby does just that. A+B Forestry should be careful who they threaten. We the people have ways to deal with injustice. Ask the British.

 's picture

Money is Power? Not always!

Money is Power? Not always!

 's picture

if it sound$ too good to be true.....

Mr. Worthley,
Please advise the owners of A & B Forestry that the recreationalist will be losing nothing by them posting their land. First of all, most of it has been stripped. Secondly, the OEM manual for a GE wind turbine states "GE will not be responsible for any injuries incurred by any recreational or human activity within 1600 feet of the base of any operating WTG." First Wind will point that out to A & B AFTER they sign the construction and operation agreement easements....which WILL be modified after FW secures the permit. They simply up the ante to A & B to roll over when they tell them to. I do not fault A & B, whomever they may be. I would feel exactly the same way if I owned the land. My point is, the developer doesn't want any liability nor publicity from human injury associated with an operating wind tower. That is why Mars Hill is shut down during the winter....many do not know this.
.....and how close do you think they want one of the locals to one of those 188ft composite turbine blades that don't take 30-06 hollow points too kindly. That's right, there is NO HUNTING within 1 mile a WTG.....watch what happens at Rollins II.....and check out the recreational rules at Kibby while you are at it.
So you see, we the masses who don't have any land, aren't really losing anything in this case.
As for posting your land, I tried it for 20 years when I lived in Rumford Center and spent the majority of my hunting season begging the local police and warden service to please do something about the trespassing bastards. I finally gave up and sold out. Perhaps you will have better luck with the locals.
Again, I completely understand how the landowner feels in losing out on this cash windfall. If you were dealing with reputable people, I would take up your cause. But you are not dealing with reputable people. These are Ivy League schooled, money hungry, city boys that think they are going to come up and walk all over us uneducated hillbillies from Maine and stick up an amount of wind towers that won't amount to a piss hole in the snow on the NE power grid but will make them very rich with the 30% federal stimulus CASH reimbursement for constructing a renewable energy facility. Might not change my mind, but would definitely make me think twice about cashing their check if I owned the land.

 's picture

This isn't blackmail

as many of you claim it is. It is simply a matter of a land owner doing what he feels is in his best interests. It isn't wrong, but what the town and the anti-wind people are doing is.
It's not the property of the town or of the citizens of the town. It's privately owned land and that owner should have a right to use it as he/she sees fit. If that means turning it into a nudist colony or a wind farm, it doesn't matter.
How many of you who are complaining actually live near this proposed development??? How many of you are from away and feel that you have to stick your noses in where they don't belong.
The only people whose opinions and votes should matter are those who are directly involved or affected by these turbines, ie: anyone within a half mile. The rest of you should butt out. As candiceanne said, buy the land in question yourselves or shut up about it.

 's picture

UMaine Engineering professors

UMaine Engineering professors did the math and based on cost to acquire & develop land and put up the turbines, the payback is slightly more than 200 years...anyone think a turbine will last 200 years? Wind power will never be a viable option on large scale and the dems who back it in miane and nationally (Reid, Pelosi) shuld be ahsamed of this scam, but they are too busy being well compensated by T Boone Pickens, one of the new leaders of wind energy...

 's picture

Hijacked

The land and the citizens of Rumford are being held hostage by this landowner. A modest fee for users or state and federal grants instead of the multi millions of dollars being funneled to developers, even after the turbines are in place, for those who want to make money from their land and are willing to do anything to get it, would take care of this problem. This land owner is being greedy and not thinking of the extreme consequences to the land and the people of Rumford if the turbines go up.

 's picture

huh?

How can the landowner hold his own land hostage?

 's picture

Note First Wind "affiliates" Italian Vento Power Corporation IVP

Note First Wind "affiliates" Italian Vento Power Corporation IVPC wind energy projects are the focus of the largest seizure of assets in Mafia history.

"As president and CEO of UPC Wind Management, located in Newton, Mass., Gaynor was tapped to bring the success of the parent company, UPC Group, to North America. In Europe and North Africa, UPC affiliates—including Italian Vento Power Corporation—have raised over $900 million in financing and installed some 900 utility-scale wind turbine generators (WTGs)"
http://www.wpi.edu/News/Transformations/2005Summer/windpower.html.

The driver behind IVPC is US wind developer UPC through its UPC International Partnership CV…”
http://www.projectfinancemagazine.com/default.asp?page=7&PubID=4&ISS=108...

Financial Times
Anti-mafia police make largest asset seizure
By Guy Dinmore in Rome

Published: September 14 2010

"Italian anti-mafia police have made their largest seizure of assets as part of an investigation into windfarm contracts in Sicily. Officers confiscated property and accounts valued at €1.5bn belonging to a businessman suspected of having links with the mafia.

Roberto Maroni, interior minister, on Tuesday accused the businessman – identified by police as Vito Nicastri and known as the island’s “lord of the winds” – of being close to a fugitive mafia boss, Matteo Messina Denaro.

General Antonio Mirone, of the anti-mafia police, said the seized assets included 43 companies – some with foreign participation and mostly in the solar and windpower sector – as well as about 100 plots of land, villas and warehouses, luxury cars and a catamaran. More than 60 bank accounts were frozen.

Until his arrest last November, Mr Nicastri, based in the inland hill town of Alcamo, was Sicily’s largest developer of windfarms, arranging purchases of land, financing and official permits. Some projects were sold through intermediaries to foreign renewable energy companies attracted to Italy by generous subsidy schemes..."

"...Mr Nicastri sold most of his windfarm projects to IVPC, a company near Naples run by Oreste Vigorito, also president of Italy’s windpower association. Mr Vigorito was also arrested last November on suspicion of fraud and later released. He denied wrongdoing..."
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/c96d2de2-c02b-11df-b77d-00144feab49a.html

Video Mafia $1.9 billion property siezure:
http://bitterqueen.typepad.com/friends_of_ours/matteo-messina-denaro/

"Mr. Caffyn personally oversaw the establishment and construction of the largest wind energy company in Italy, Italian Vento Power Corporation."
http://www.upcsolar.com/about-management.asp

 's picture

Easy Money for the Ignorant and "Land Rapist"should be Denied!

Mr. Worthly and your scoundrel "land owner"(also known as a "land rapist"),Take your Greed and Trails, and stuff them!
Citizens, Support the Wind Ordinance in Rumford, make idiots like these financially hurt all you can.
Ordinance UP MAINE!
Deny Wind Scoundrels Our State!

 's picture

Big Wind Blows

The biggest landowner in Carthage used the same tactics to blackmail the citizens of our small town into defeating the moratorium vote. It takes real sand for small town selectmen to resist becoming corporate prostitutes. Money is what it's all about. The rape of the land and the people who live there matters not to industrial wind and those that benefit from the federal subsidies (our tax dollars).

 's picture

Well, if that doesn't beat all...

Reading that article actually made me ashamed... if that's not blackmail, I don't know what is.

God Almighty, this is what we've been reduced to by these wind developers, who have sanction by our state government to legally bribe Mainers in order to get their way. And while I've dreaded this day-- knowing it was coming-- still... to read it in print was a shock. And it is heart-breaking.

Well... shocked, saddened, or ashamed... I've never been one to fold when threatened. If I know my fellow Mainers, that will get their backs up, as well. I hope residents stop and think carefully about this situation. The areas around these wind developments WILL be posted. Perhaps not the whole parcel, but surely, the ridges surrounding the turbines will be. No matter how many times residents might hear "We don't INTEND to post the property", developers cannot afford to allow the region surrounding these developments to remain open to the public. There is too much danger-- too much liability. They know it. They just don't want US to know it until they've received their high-priced permits. It costs alot to buy the integrity of a portion of town, after all.

I understand that times are tight. I understand how a family can feel desperate. But what this land owner is doing is wrong. They have a right to post their property, yes. They do NOT have the right to coerce a segment of a population to capitulate to their demands-- or else. They have other options to obtain income from their property. Those ways may not be as 'quick and easy' as the dollars offered by the wind industry, but they would surely be obtained more honorably.

To try to intimidate others or to coerce them into supporting something--or else!-- is wrong. And reading that made me ashamed.

Will we let the wind industry do this to us? By God, I won't. I only own a pitiful 70 acres. I'm not nearly as poor as are these people who are burdened with 4,500 acres. But I don't post my property. If you'd like to come and smowmobiles across my north forty, you're more than welcome to. If you want to enjoy 'pristine Maine' though, you'd better do it quickly. I've got two developments proposed for my front and back yard, too.

Respectfully-- but very saddened,
Karen Pease
Lexington Twp., Maine

 's picture

Benefits?

Karen, you mention that you have developments proposed for both your front and your back yard. I've got one proposed for my front yard. While a string of these 40 story tall things will be the first thing I see each morning, I haven't been able to come up with any upside for our family. I'm not a resident of that town, I'm over the line in the next town. My CMP bill won't go down, I'll still be paying for my kid's education, my roads will still have the same old potholes, and I won't be able to hike on that beautiful ridge anymore. I don't think there will be any global changes (reduction in oil, troops coming home, etc.). I was just wondering, given you have a development on either side of you, what you expect the gain to you and yours will be? Will there be (could there be) enough to offset the change?

 's picture

Wow, sounds like Armageddon

But I didn't ask you any questions. Take care of that cough.

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