Maine lawmakers should reject the LePage administration’s proposal to gut the expedited permitting process for Maine’s green energy wind power projects. Gov. Paul LePage claims the wind power projects could harm the state’s tourism industry.

If any changes are made to the existing green energy 2008 law that would eliminate the streamlined review process, the result could have a negative impact on some landowners. The state has millions of acres of land owned and managed by private landowners. LePage’s proposal would face strong opposition from environmentalists and timberland owners because it would discourage future wind energy companies from leasing or buying land for wind power projects. That would cut off the income for landowners.

Landowners will have to look for other means of income from their land if the state closes down the wind project business.

Richard McInnis, Rumford

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