Monday, November 22, 2010

Roxanne Quimby's Landholdings

The Maine Sunday Telegram looked into the recent development begun by Roxanne Quimby in Willimantic. Quimby, who owns over 100,000 acres in Maine, apparently prohibits hunting and motorized vehicles on much of this land. Many people have assumed that her landholdings would not be developed, but as the article reveals none of her properties have easements that restrict development.
"'Our message really is this genuine compassion for the local economy,' said Leathers. Among other benefits, it would provide a boost for the town's tax base, he said.

Quimby bought the land in 2002, at the urging of neighbors who were trying to protect it from development, said Fran Leyman of Bowdoin. Leyman owns a camp on a half-acre lot she leased and then bought from International Paper Co., which at the time was selling a half-dozen leased lots and 142 surrounding acres for about $200,000.
Leathers, Quimby's property manager, said he couldn't say whether she has similar plans for any of the other timberland she owns.

He said Quimby has no easements on any of her land to protect it from development.

"She enjoys having unencumbered title to property," he said.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Where is LePage on Wind Power?

The Press Herald asks this important question.
"Our next governor, who has said repeatedly that he is pro-business, should clearly voice his support for [wind power] business, which has the potential to play a key role in Maine's economic future.

The arguments against wind power break down into two main categories. The first is aesthetic (with both visual and aural complaints) and the second is economic, made by people who say that wind energy is too expensive and can't be harnessed without government subsidies.

While the second charge may be true, at least in the short run, it has also been true for hydroelectric dams and other new kinds of energy generators.

As wind power becomes established and the technology improves, new investment won't need the subsidies.

And the price of power is relative. There is no guarantee that natural gas prices won't spike, making wind power a lower-cost alternative, even if its price does not go down over time."