JAY — The Board of Selectpersons has received a petition signed by 217 registered voters requesting a town meeting be held within 60 days to determine whether residents oppose a proposed Central Maine Power transmission line.

The  $1 billion, 145-mile power line would bring electricity from Canada through Western Maine and Lewiston to Massachusetts.

The board is expected to take up the petition when it meets at 6 p.m. Monday, May 13, at the Town Office.

If that article were to pass, the petition seeks a second question asking whether voters want selectpersons to submit a letter of opposition to CMP and state agencies.

According to the Maine Municipal Association, the statutory requirement on petitions says “municipal officers shall either insert a particular article in the next warrant issued or shall within 60 days call a special town meeting for its consideration.”

Selectpersons voted last year to support CMP’s controversial project and in November voted to continue with that support.


A petition submitted in November — signed by 405 registered voters — to oppose the project was denied by selectpersons because it was not formatted in accordance with town standards for meeting articles.

Jay stands to gain more than $460,000 in new tax revenue if the CMP project were to go through.

A reported 7 miles of the proposed New England Clean Energy Connect project would go through Jay, according to Terry Bergeron, chairman of the Board of Selectpersons.

The proposed transmission line would go through several towns in Western Maine, including Jay, Livermore Falls, Farmington, Chesterville, New Sharon and Wilton.

The project is still in the permitting stages at the state and federal levels, although the Maine Public Utilities Commission has issued a permit for the project and Gov. Janet Mills has said she supports it.

The Maine PUC’s three commissioners unanimously agreed with a PUC staff report that the economic and grid-reliability benefits of CMP’s proposed transmission line outweigh the harder-to-quantify impact on scenery and outdoor recreation in the Western Maine mountains, according to reports.


In granting a “certificate of public convenience and necessity” to the New England Clean Energy Connect project, the PUC endorsed a settlement agreement that provides $258 million in financial incentives to the state, communities and electric ratepayers in Maine.

The decision represented a major initial victory for CMP and its partner, Hydro-Québec.

The power line project faces plenty of resistance, including strong opposition from the Natural Resources Council of Maine.

Residents of several towns, including Farmington, Starks and Wilton, have voted to oppose it.


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