September 18, 2013COLEBROOK — A public U.S. Department of Energy "scoping" hearing on the proposed Northern Pass Transmission (NPT) project has been moved from West Stewartstown south to Colebrook after the state's Congressional delegation and Coös County Commissioner Rick Samson raised concerns about the capacity of venue that was first announced.
The site was changed "in response to public requests that raised concerns about insufficient capacity" in the ground-floor space at the Spa Restaurant and Outback Pub in West Stewartstown, according to a USDOE statement.
The meeting will now be held from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 26, at the Colebrook Elementary School at 27 Dumont Street, off Route 3.
The first of the two scheduled hearings on the proposed NPT project will be held the previous evening: from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 25, in the free-standing Presidential Hall at the Mountain View Grand Hotel & Spa in Whitefield.
Earlier that week two scoping hearings will be held below the Notches: from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 23, at the Grappone Conference Center in Concord, and from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24, in the Silver Center for the Arts at Plymouth State University in Plymouth.
The hearings are required because NPT filed an amended route in July that changed its proposed route in the northern reaches of Coös County.
Comments and information will be recorded at all four scheduled meetings for use by the federal DOE as it considers whether or not to grant the proposed project a Presidential Permit that is needed if the proposed 1,200-megawatt High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) line is allowed to cross the US-Canada border in Pittsburg.
NPT spokesmen have consistently said that the negative comments about the height of the towers and the "in-your-face route" for the first 40 miles resulted in the changes rolled out in June at a press conference in Hooksett by then-Public Service of New Hampshire president and CEO Gary Long.