Dear SOS Supporters,
What we have learned:
Since our earlier email regarding the Apex Community Forum on Lighthouse Wind, SOS learned that the format of the event will include displays and an Apex panel of experts. Citizens will not have a public opportunity to address issues with the panel of experts but will be directed to write questions on a 4 X 6 card that may be answered by the panel or given written response at a later date. Their press release reads as follows: “Signs, banners or disruptive behavior will not be permitted. Security will be present.” We have information that two state troopers and four Orleans County Deputy Sheriff’s will be at the event.
Our concern about the event:
Our level of frustration with Apex is completely understandable and warranted but it is imperative that SOS not be baited by Apex or their supporters and take the higher ground so the clear unequivocal message of opposition does not get overlooked.
Apex is not interested in hearing the well-informed concerns of the community. They won’t have an open microphone. They may be even planting questions. If the content of the meeting is like the content of the post cards they’ve been sending, the information in the meeting will reference outdated studies, omit relevant information, and discuss generalities that do not answer our specific questions. We are also concerned that the large police presence at the event in our peaceful community is an effort to intimidate residents and create an atmosphere of control.
SOS plan for the event:
Apex is attempting to silence majority opposition, so we are taking our message outside with an Apex Go Home rally, a passionate, respectful, old fashioned First Amendment rally. SOS will meet outside of the venue at 6:15 p.m. with our T shirts and signs in a location that does not block passage and is respectful of those walking into and out of the venue. We can discuss our questions regarding the Apex mailings, questions we want answered and be a presence opposed to the project.
We encourage you to attend the Rally at 6:15 p.m. or whenever you arrive.
SOS will respect all police requests and asks that we all respect those who are supportive of the project. As always, we are simply providing a venue for opposition voices – voices that Apex would like to diminish and belittle. It is important for the future of our towns and our state that our concerns be addressed with the seriousness and thoroughness that they deserve.
Shortly before the panel begins (we do not have a schedule but will get one Tuesday night) some will leave to attend the “community forum”. SOS hopes to have a respectful (although silent) presence inside of the venue to hear what Apex will present. We encourage people to wear SOS shirts, hats and buttons into the venue so that people will be aware of existing opposition since no voices but Apex’s will be heard.
We ask that people take notes and record their submitted questions in some manner (use cell phone to take a photo or make a notation) and provide those to SOS so that we can be sure that Apex answers all of them by the November 2 deadline that they have set.
Apex has stated to the media that local people who oppose the Lighthouse Wind project are misinformed. Many residents have done significant research and have well informed questions and reasons that they believe this project should not move forward. We hope that our Rally outside will make our concerns known. Although silent in the venue, we can all work to address specific information from the Apex event in the weeks to come.