December 19th, 2018  SOS Newsletter
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By UpstateNYer - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Season’s Greetings from SOS, Best wishes for a happy, healthy New Year!

Things may slow down in terms of emails and Facebook posts during the Christmas holidays as we all take time to spend with our family and friends. But as always, we appreciate your ongoing support and want to keep you informed of our efforts to stop the Lighthouse Wind project. The following is a summary of a meeting we arranged with the Department of Public Service on November 26, 2018. We feel it was time well spent!
  • Attendees for SOS: Pam Atwater, President; Kate Kremer, Vice President;

    Gary Abraham, Attorney

  • Attendees for DPS: Sarah Osgood, Director of Policy Implementation;

    James Denn, Director of Public Affairs; Brian Ossias, Managing Attorney

  • SOS objective: To bring the voice and concerns of citizens who reside in project areas to state officials charged with overseeing projects.

  • Previous statements made by Ms. Osgood talked about making the process of project implementation “frictionless’’. She had indicated that this was a result of hearing the concerns of developers.

  • Ms. Osgood said her comments were not reported fully and were meant to apply to the process being smoother for all parties, taking into account community concerns.

  • DPS stated that projects should be placed in “communities that want them” and that waivers of local laws are not favored under Article 10. We agreed, but questioned whether the wishes of a community are always reflected in the statements and actions of town board members, where one or more of those members have become “project participants”. (Fortunately, this is not an issue here in the towns of Somerset and Yates.)

  • SOS pointed out that the system seems heavily tilted towards developers with financial and staff resources that communities and citizen groups cannot match.

  • SOS identified areas where the Article 10 process is not working:

    • Stipulation process – too time consuming and expensive

    • Lack of inclusion of citizens and municipal officials

    • Developer public “outreach” is limited to project supporters

    • Developer public “outreach” provide self-serving misinformation concluding that its burdens under Part 1001 have already been met, and concerns are unfounded

    • Inadequate intervenor funding for communities and citizen groups with concerns

  • SOS noted that any streamlining of the Article 10 process needs to include community input.

  • SOS stressed that the State must address the lack of transmission infrastructure prior to any project being allowed to begin the Article 10 process. Not addressing transmission constraints to utilization first forces municipalities and citizens to spend time, energy and money on a project which may not be effective in achieving state energy goals.

  • SOS pointed out that NYS energy goals for reducing carbon and increased reliance on renewables does not include rooftop solar usage and other behind-the-meter generation. (Estimates are that rooftop solar could provide 35% of electric demand nationally, including a similar percentage in New York State.) DPS offered no response.

  • SOS provided a list of organizations that oppose, or have serious reservations with, this project including the POWER Coalition (Protecting {Lake} Ontario’s Waterfront, Environment, and Resources), government bodies, and public health organizations.


Next Steps:

  • James Denn was identified as the DPS point person for concerned citizens to contact with project-related questions or concerns.

  • Issues related to Apex not complying with the Article 10 process will be addressed by filing motions to the Administrative Law Judge.

  • SOS will compile general policy concerns to share with Ms. Osgood.

SOS is 100% funded by generous local individuals. Please consider joining this work by giving what you can. SOS is a not for profit corporation and it is not a tax exempt organization, so donations are not deductible for tax purposes.

We have a donation button on our web site

Checks can be sent to:
Save Ontario Shores
PO Box 216
Lyndonville, NY 14098
Copyright © 2018 Save Ontario Shores, Inc., All rights reserved.

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