Thursday, March 9, 2023

 HB 609, a bill to abolish the Site Evaluation Committee and transfer its role to the NH Public Utilities Committee. Public and state agency members on the current SEC would be removed.

March 7, 2023 Hearing

NH House Science, Technology, and Energy Committee

Proposed HB 609:

Three Seats at the Table, All for the PUC

Excerpt starts at 1:04:41 (lightly edited for grammatical clarity)

Rep. Rebecca McWilliams, House STE Committee:

"Follow-up question … so just to understand this…we're talking about three PUC Commissioners as the Site Evaluation Committee. That's it. And only two actually need to attend in order to move forward on any decision. That's the proposal. So I'm asking if we can change that makeup and add a couple more to get a little bit of variety here because the PUC is all appointees, and it doesn't necessarily reflect the interests of everyone in this room so I'm looking at the proposal for having the Attorney General appoint somebody to be a member or be involved. Perhaps that person could have a voting authority so that there's at least something beyond the PUC. I hear what you're saying about attendance and perhaps different departments don't have the same interest and it's not a priority or they don't feel that they get enough money to compensate people to attend. All of those are legitimate concerns but fundamentally we want to have a Site Evaluation Committee that is neutral, that is independent, and so the concern is making sure that we have the bodies there that are voting who represent those interests to be neutral and independent, and I'm not convinced that three PUC Commissioners are truly neutral and independent because they’re appointees. So what I'm looking at is would you be open to an amendment or changes to get more members on that board [that would be going] from seven to three?"

Mark Sanborn, Assistant Commissioner of NH DES:

"Um, respectfully, no. That's the whole problem. More voices are only beneficial if more voices improve the process. In this case the key to a good permitting . . . process is ensuring all voices have the opportunity to speak to the issue, to the project in question, not that a board or . . . whoever is approving it are made up of all those voices. To me it's not important the number of folks who make up the adjudicative body, it's do the folks on that board have the expertise in terms of energy and permitting to make good decisions?"

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Story Of Northern Pass ‘Resistance’ Preserved at Sugar Hill Historical Museum

Story Of Northern Pass ‘Resistance’ Preserved at Sugar Hill Historical Museum


July 9, 2018

By News release

Editor’s note: State utility regulators voted 7-0 on May 24 to reject a motion to reconsider their decision turning down the $1.6 billion, 192-mile Northern Pass Transmission project from Pittsburg to Deerfield. Project developer Eversource wanted the Site Evaluation Committee to vacate its February decision denying the application, reopen deliberations and consider conditions the utility said would mitigate its concerns. Eversource said at the time that it is not giving up the fight.

New historical resource opens under the auspices of the Sugar Hill Historical Museum, Sugar Hill, N.H.

With the support of grants from the “‘You Have Our Trust’ Fund of the NH Charitable Foundation” and an anonymous donor, the Sugar Hill Historical Museum will archive materials produced in opposition to the Northern Pass Transmission project from 2010 to 2018. The Town of Easton will provide additional storage space.

The two grants total $2,500. The money will be used to purchase curation materials to preserve the artifacts (e.g., fire-resistant storage containers, acid-free folders for photos and tubes for posters, etc.), for labor to catalogue and enter the accessions into a digital database.

The archive will preserve and document the story of the resistance to Northern Pass by “grassroots” citizens, as well as by conservation, environmental, recreational, and other non-governmental organizations, and by municipal and legislative groups. It will be available to researchers investigating the nature and history of this widespread, enduring opposition movement. The museum may also present exhibits of the archived materials from time to time.

Artifacts to be collected include: banners, buttons, bows, pins, bumper stickers, posters, lawn signs, flyers, post cards, tee shirts, hats, CDs, videos, and related items. Textual material includes newspaper clippings, magazine articles, letters to the editor, etc. Photos of events and of artifacts too large to store will also be preserved.
The archive will not conserve regulatory and other documents available online, e.g., public comments to the Site Evaluation Committee, and the museum reserves the right to decline and dispose of material that is redundant or not relevant.

The archive is now accepting donated materials. They may be submitted in person to the Museum during its open hours, Fridays and Saturdays, 11:00 am – 3:00 pm, Memorial Day to Columbus Day, or by U. S. mail. Digital resources should be submitted on a flash drive or memory stick, not by electronic mail, and labeled to indicate the contents. All donated materials should be accompanied by a statement indicating the name of the donor, a brief description of the artifacts, and the date of their creation.

The museum campus is located at 1401 Route 117 across from the Sugar Hill Post Office and next to the Town Hall and Library. The mailing address is Sugar Hill Historical Museum, P. O. Box 591, Sugar Hill, N.H. 03586.

For further information, contact Kitty Bigelow, Executive Director, Sugar Hill Historical Museum, at; or Susan Schibanoff at

The Archive advisory committee also includes Nancy Martland, Sugar Hill, and Kris Pastoriza, Easton.

The Sugar Hill Historical Museum, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, also accepts financial contributions dedicated to supporting the curation of the Northern Pass Opposition Archive.