2016 Pipeline Matters

Mason Warrant Article 7, 2016 (proposed)

To see if the town will vote to raise and appropriate the sum of Twenty Thousand Dollars($20,000) to be expended at the discretion of the Board of Selectmen in opposition to the proposed Northeast Energy Direct high pressure gas pipeline, lateral line, and the appurtenances, and/or to minimize the impact thereof on the land and people of the Town of Mason, including but not limited to expenditures for legal representation and consultants, land use planning and zoning consultation, public information purposes, administrative and court filing fees, participation in multi-town coalitions, and any and all other expenses reasonably related to opposing said pipeline project and/or mitigating the effects thereof. This will be a non-lapsing appropriation per RSA 32-7, VI and will not lapse until December 31, 2018. Recommended by the Board of Selectmen.

Mason Warrant Article 13, 2015 (passed)

To see if the Town will vote to raise and appropriate the sum of Eighty Thousand Dollars ($80,000) to be expended at the discretion of the Board of Selectmen in opposition to the proposed Northeast Energy Direct high pressure gas pipeline, lateral line, and appurtenances, and/or to minimize the impact thereof on the land and people of the Town of Mason, including but not limited to expenditures for legal representation and consultants, land use planning and zoning consultation, public information purposes, administrative and court filing fees, participation in multi-town coalitions, and any and all other expenses reasonably related to opposing said pipeline project and/or mitigating the effects thereof. This will be a non-lapsing appropriation per RSA 32-7, VI and will not lapse until December 31, 2018. Recommended by the Board of Selectmen.

The interesting point here is that these two warrant articles are, except for the dollar amount and a Waldo moment for the word “the”, identical. So if the 2016 version passes, a running tally would imply that $100,000 has or will been spent. And we’re not sure that’s the end of it. It would appear that the selectmen have not made that calculation. Will there be another appropriation request for, say $60,000, in 2017?

However, more to the point, notice the reference to RSA 32-7, VI, it’s a pretty dull RSA and the real relevance is that it’s cited. Compare this to 2016 Article 14 which has no such citations, and point of fact elevates itself above NH statutes and even the NH and US constitution. However, we’ll get to that in a later post, in the mean time you can read Selectman Moser’s point of view on 2016 Article 14 here. It’s one of the few places we actually agree.

3 comments for “2016 Pipeline Matters

  1. Bazil
    March 8, 2016 at 16:04

    20k has been spent, they are asking for 20k to bring the total back to 80k.

    • Wentworth
      March 8, 2016 at 16:12

      Yes, there are (or will be) two appropriations, one for $80,000 and a follow up of $20,000. That’s $100,000 appropriated. Whether or not the selectmen wish to keep the war chest at $80,000 because of what was spent, doesn’t change the appropriations.

  2. thauri
    March 8, 2016 at 20:33

    I voted to expend $80,000, not $100,000, or even $120,000. So I will vote against this article.

    Let’s assume this gas is all for export. Is it better for our security to have our European allies buy gas from us, or is it better to have our allies dependent on Vladimir Putin (Friend of Trump)?

    Would it not mitigate the effects of the pipeline if the gas exported through the pipeline was taxed and the revenues therefrom rebated directly to the affected communities or property owners?

    Are our cherished elected representatives working on anything like this?

    Ted Hauri

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