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Central Maine town in path of proposed Aroostook power corridor approves moratorium on utility lines

Town of Albion Facebook page
Albion, Maine from above.

Voters in Albion approved a six-month moratorium on high-impact transmission lines earlier this week. The central Maine town is on a proposed path for a power corridor that would connect Aroostook County to the southern Maine electrical grid. Supporters of the moratorium say it will give the town more time to study the potential visual and environmental impacts of the project.

Tom Bolen, who leads Albion's newly formed transmission line committee, said town residents did not form the group and pass the temporary moratorium to derail the project.

"No doubt we need to connect Aroostook County in some form or fashion. But what we can't do is just tear up the landscape and say yeah, this is for the good of all. When the reality is there's other methods, there's other alternatives."

The group wants project developer LS Power to collocate the lines with existing transmission corridors or routes or bury them underground. Bolen said the group is speaking with residents from Plymouth, Unity and Windsor, among other towns that could be impacted by the proposed 150 mile long corridor.

A spokesperson for LS Power said the company is aware of the moratorium.

"We have been actively listening to and meeting with a number of landowners, towns and other stakeholders receiving feedback on our alternative routes," Doug Mulvey of LS Power said in an email. "Our focus is on receiving and considering this feedback, improving the preliminary routes and minimizing impacts to all stakeholders to the extent possible. We look forward to continuing these efforts with project stakeholders and will have more information available on these ongoing efforts in the coming weeks."