NORWICH – So far, elected officials have been the primary extenders – from the government level – of public opposition to the www.evesun.com/topics/news/NYRI/">NYRI power line. But should local and state tax dollars be affording concerned residents more than just the support of area legislators?
According to Supervisor James Bays (D-Smyrna), state departments and agencies should also be reviewing the 400,000 volt New York Regional Interconnection, and advocating in the best interests of the citizens, businesses and organizations they represent along the proposed corridor.
“We’ve given a pass to the appointed officials in the executive branch who have the same responsibility as legislators to act in the interest of their constituency,” Bays said. “We’ve let the executive branch off the hook.”
Since the fight began in March, citizens have been urged to contact their state and federal representatives, several of whom have in-turn conducted informational hearings with www.evesun.com/topics/news/NYRI/">NYRI officials, provided line-item funding to fight the line, and helped pass legislation currently blocking the power company’s use of eminent domain. Bays contends the list of contacts should also include the names and addresses of the various executive state offices who are already statutory parties in power line cases – meaning they automatically receive every project Article VII application, including NYRI’s which was handed out in June – and are given the choice to study them and provide any insight in relation to their areas of expertise.