Who's looking out for our interests? by Patricia Martin
REGARDING CONCORD STEAM & MILLIONS OF YOUR TAX DOLLARS
"We elect our state representatives with the expectation that they will propose legislation that will benefit their constituents and the state of New Hampshire. We don’t expect them to write or sponsor legislation that “sounds good,” but actually harms us economically or socially.
We also have an expectation that the press will closely monitor proposed legislation and investigate claims of benefits or harms. An informed electorate is the best tool in defense of democracy.
Unfortunately, neither of those expectations are being met. Please allow me to offer two recent examples of how we’re being let down, along with a request that the press and our representatives “step it up” on our behalf.
Thanks to Rep. James McConnell, R-Swanzey, many of us in the pipeline fight were alerted to Senate Bill 128. This bill is designed to change the language of the Restructuring Act to allow electric ratepayers to be charged a tariff for 20-year fracked gas pipeline contracts and contracts for power from Northern Pass.
Such tariffs were rejected by the Public Utilities Commission based on language in the Restructuring Act. SB 128 changes that language in such a way as to make “moot” the challenge Eversource has taken before the N.H. Supreme Court.
Were it not for Rep. McConnell telling us about SB 128, no one from the pipeline or Northern Pass opposition would even know that we were about to be sold out. And, honestly, when you read the text of the bill, it sounds so good! You need to be a lawyer to understand its impact on current events.