The following comment by Doug Verdier and posted on the Strib blog on November 29, 2013, is in response to Bill McAuliffe’s Strib article about the Crown Hydro public meeting.
More Questions Than Answers
I attended this meeting and came away with many more questions than answers. The presenters were certainly not forthcoming with facts or details about the project. My impression was that this “informational meeting” was scheduled merely to check off a box in the requirements that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is demanding. It was notable that no one from the actual Crown Hydro LLC organization was present to answer questions other than a hired gun attorney who contributed nothing to the discussion. When questioned about the financial viability of Crown Hydro LLC, the presenters refused even to state who they were working for. Overall, the presenters from Wenck Associates (both engineers) seemed unprepared to answer questions that both FERC and the public have been asking for years about the project, which keeps moving its location along the riverfront. They were even very uninformed as to the details of the license that FERC granted in 1999. Members of the audience seemed to know more about the license than they did. The secrecy and obfuscation surrounding this project are disturbing and, in my view, should be sufficient for FERC to revoke the license that was granted in 1999 for a project whose time has long since expired.