We cost them Kinder Morgan less in their acquisition of thinner, made-in-China pipes.In Historic Deerfield, Kinder would have lower insurance premiums for liability, cheaper, 30 % thinner pipes in the rural areas - even sited in flood plains like the North Meadows. We will be holding the bag when the lines snap in an epic storm, for pipelines running under the electric grids in huge sections across Deerfield and Northfield, and now, perhaps Warwick? So many towns. This will imperil the towers all around if we get a big boom from a snapped line, down in a flooded fields like the North Meadows of Deerfield, following the easements that pre-exist from WMECO infrastructure build out, from years back. They really want the path of the grid across your neighbor's farm lands and Woolman Hill, there are pre-existing rights of way. Problem is: Irene took out our entire valley floor here, she went down deeper than the NED may go, and she let us know who is really in charge. Pipes will be exposed and snap like twigs in Western Mass. Our neighbors and communities will suffer fiscally and in ways we cannot recover from. Say it takes our neighbor's lives, their homes and their sense of all that is OK or right in their own homes? Well, that is actually gone now, because they map it under bedroom windows and across your neighbor's lawns. Our CT and the Deerfield rivers stand to be fouled by back-fill as they bore under, with sediment disruption that makes them not healthy for fish, as well as their potential dumping to avoid hazmat and proper storage charges associated with the operation -to get a pipeline 120 feet under our cherished CT and Deerfield rivers. They were found guilty and charged in 4 counties in PA during the build out of 300 Line. NED is slated to tie in to the 300 Line. They dumped and fouled water in 4 counties- on purpose. 4 Counties. Imagine this damage here. They got caught because neighbors like us had to go spy on them and submit pics to get them- after the damage was done. Google it. Do we want that toxic junk and degradation for our lands, neighbors houses, farms, rivers, cultural assets and state forests, here? FYI: Kinder has failed to document HOW they plan to do that horizontal drilling, writing TBD in entire sections submitted to FERC for this NED. Governmental filings that lack information on how they plan to blow stuff up to put it under rivers and highways. Specifically: drilling and blasting under the Deerfield and CT rivers, 91 N and S., surface routes like 5 and 10, and multiple rail roads that carry volatile substances. You would think if they have done pipelines before they would fill in that part for the Feds in their FERC documents? Perhaps to allow the people whose homes are nearby these locations to know how their foundations will be damaged, whether by dynamite or fracking the rock formations. The fracking and blasting part in our bedrock will toxify the cracked wells of your neighbors, making their water undrinkable or unsafe for watering crops, in many yards across the Western Mass. path of the NED. We are all collateral damage. Damage that cannot be easily fixed. There are quite a few people who live in the shadow of power lines in Mapped Incineration Zones who cannot sell their homes at this point, and who are known to be "Imperiled due to Proximity" where no aid can be rendered in the event of a mishap. Their water lines would be blown out, and the homes and people will be dead or hurt in a blast, purely based on Kinder not being required to map the line away from residences and schools. They know this Zone, because it has happened before, oopsie, we killed some people. Now they are required to map it. However, somehow, they are not required to notify abutters who sit adjacent to lines and in their maps, if they are more that 200 feet from the power lines. Burn Zone is 949 feet wide. This shows their disregard for the safety and value of human life as they look for 7 billion on our backs, across Mass. NH, CT, with tie in to NY and PA. With regard to Historic Deerfield and the loss of artifacts, get this: Bement School's playing fields are in the Mapped Incineration zone for Franklin County. Deerfield has a volunteer fire department. The fields that hold the artifacts also flood out in hurricanes. It creates potential for massive fiscal impact from civil suit litigation of survivor's families that would never be remedied. Town could go belly up. Possible loss of Bement school kids, parents and neighbors, and innumerable, know historic, cultural artifacts that cannot be dug up, carted off, or back-hoed into oblivion. Kinder Morgan has 2 million in liability, I may be wrong on that but it is way low. NED pipeline is a lose-lose for Mass., for jobs creation and for the concept of infrastructure that supports actual economic development for Mass. The home loss, job loss, land loss and disregard for safety is outrageous. Berkshire Gas is Spanish energy giant, Iberdrola. They serve more than 32 million clients in Europe and Latin America. They want to pump the gas to 32 million customers, and get more going there. Europe pays 2 x more than we do for gas. The the cupboard will be bare here. Your electric and gas prices will rise as they deplete the Marcellus Shale find and get it out in of the US, across our lawns, in an unregulated market, to the highest bidder. Supply and demand. ...(full comment)
Renewable energy would free us all from this abuse. Note they have plenty of money for advertising day and night, and swollen executive salaries: but we have thousands upon thousands of gas leaks. Perhaps gas development should be stalled until the leaks are fixed to make a dent in owed money, and in the meantime, other forms of energy should be given primacy. Frankly the "customer service" has been lousy. p.S. as of 2013, even AFTER, some plants were taken offline, we STILL had double the inflow pipeline capacity than we actually needed, and that did not include LNG. FIX THE LEAKS. ...(full comment)
Massachusetts has a law that requires gas companies to fix leaks in their aging pipelines all over the state. If you look at the maps available for towns all over the state you can see that these companies have used maintenance capex for other things: as their executive salaries have swollen, bilking businesses and homeowners IN EVERY SINGLE TOWN, and creating unhealthy, and even deadly conditions. It would be an interesting exercise to look at Bradley's voting record in watering down That legislation to aid gas companies and significantly gas investment companies????? WE paid for gas we didn't get: billions upon billions of cubic feet of gas that was never delivered, while executive salaries soared. Why in God's name would we want to become MORE dependent on an industry that has demonstrated a pattern of theft, poor accountability, and disregard? If these pipelines are left unrepaired it helps gin up a case for "more pipelines". If you look at just how widespread this problem is all over the state, why in God's name would anyone WANT to do business with these folks. Let the alternatives be explored, finally. Gas investments from around the world are converging on our region and have been kneecapping renewable energy: we need to get alternatives NOW: tell Baker to lift caps on net metering and get windpower. Why are we "deepening our relationship" with abusive entities? ...(full comment)
Berkshire Gas is actually Spanish-owned energy co., Iberdrola. # 1 energy provider in Europe, FYI. Kinder, is # 3, US - behind Exxon and Chevron. They are the biggest pigs who seeks to get more, more, more of this gas to export and then sell it to you, here, at higher prices, via a shortfall they create themselves-taking our land, our safety and our Valley. Gas in $6.93 in Europe - as of July, and sub 3 bucks in US. See where I am going? Kinder Morgan seeks the path of least resistance to pump out the gas, via our sweet valley, to market in Europe, via Canadian transit. The whole pipeline will result in higher domestic prices and it will deplete the Marcellus Shale-a gas find which is unregulated. A find that that we need to last longer ~ for our kids and their kids. Keep Kinder Morgan out of your neighbor's yards, fields, and rivers here, and your gas prices will stay down. There is no pricing guarantee if they get this in. They will deplete the reserve and quickly raise your prices, citing scarcity. They will have created the scarcity, but you will be the one to pay. Get educated and fight for your valley, please, before the # 3 big gas/oil giant wrecks our farms and rivers to make 7 Billion off our backs and our neighbors backs. It ain't right. It ain't infrastructure. It is a for profit, a huge, toxic, flammable time bomb of a multi-state transit route for getting their highly flammable, toxic, fracked gas to export. It will not be pretty. It will ruin us when if blows in a Hurricane or epic 100 year storm. We will pay more if it gets in. We have no tools across the route to fight a 200 foot fireball, burning between valves- that may or may not shut off. Google: Kinder Morgan's Safety Record- not on their website, though. Google: Kinder Morgan convicted in 5 deaths, Walnut Creek CA Nov. 9, 2004. Get ready to join up, because this is seriously going to impact you- not with lower prices but with clear and present danger, and higher prices. My Gram would have said "smarten up!" ...(full comment)
The Mayor says that being number two in the State with the tax rate doesn’t mean anything? He also says our rate has to be higher because "...we don't have a lot of people contributing to the base."
Our tax rate wouldn’t 'have to be' higher if our SPENDING were lower! It's not, or not just, the small base, it's the SPENDING per capita. Maybe if we stop SPENDING money on sculpture installations, splash parks, dog parks, outdoor TV sets (Seriously, it's in front of Town Hall), security cameras to watch over the outdoor TV, $110,000 portable performance stages, $130,000 proposed (but thankfully halted) precinct cash giveaways, proposed parking garages, and $5 million (!) broadband networks (regarding which even The Recorder has suggested we cool our jets) to name but a few, we could have a lower tax rate. These are all great projects, I'm sure, but we simply don't have the money. (And before anyone goes there, please don't bring up 'grant money' because, ultimately, that comes from us, too, and grant money rarely covers the full upfront cost, or ongoing operation and maintenance.)
Perhaps one contributing factor to our small base is high taxes? And if we were to curb SPENDING and lower the tax rate, you know what that would mean? Lower taxes!
After receiving a nearly $200,000 tax break from the Mayor and the Town Council, which I understood from an earlier article opens the door for another possible tax break from the State, Robert Cartelli responds by pointedly thanking only those that favored the tax break, and publicly attacking those who opposed it as not being 'business friendly' and 'lacking vision'.
A lot of people in town have a vision, too, a vision of a Greenfield that doesn’t raise property taxes every year, a vision of living in a Town that doesn't have the second highest property tax rate in the State of Massachusetts, a vision of goods and services, including new cars, being more affordable if homeowners could get a break and we all owed less in real estate taxes.
I'm really taken aback that the response to this largesse from the Town was anything more than, "Thank you so much! I really appreciate what you just did for me!"
Wow!!! I'm sorry, but I've got to say it- this gives new meaning to the term "stabbed in the back!!" Lol...poor guy! As for the woman, I hope she is treated properly for whatever illnesses she clearly has! Jail is not always the place for mentally I'll people, they need to go somewhere where they can be treated for their problems! ...(full comment)
Yep, Berkshire Gas is Spanish-Owned, Iberdrola. Gas is going for almost 7 bucks in Europe, half that here. They want that fracked gas pumped export it to Europe on New England's back, on our dime, through our yards. The pipeline is a multi-state transmission line, not an answer to the (fake) moratorium created to make you think we need it. And, jobs for pipeliners are going to be taken by union guys with campers who travel the US doing it when a job is posted. They will not pay for much besides beer and drugs and coffee and unsavory ladies for hire. They will sleep in campers and they won't be from here. ...(full comment)
One fact mentioned in this article is particularly troubling, that of the "hydrofracking chemicals that travel with the gas ... many of them ... proven carcinogens, endocrine disrupters, and neurotoxins" being released periodically in the area. There is nothing that can justify such long term damage to our environment. ...(full comment)
But what's the point of attracting new businesses to Greenfield if they all get big tax breaks, as you are suggesting? "Business-friendly" does not mean Greenfield residents need to "give away the store," so-to-speak. That's a race to the bottom, and taxes in Greenfield are already ridiculous due in part to all these exemptions, abatements and giveaways. And it's not like Ford could just pick up and move to a neighboring town; there's only so many advantageous places for a car dealership to locate, and Greenfield gets the most traffic in Franklin County. Not to mention they've been there for 50+ years, employing people all along, so why the need for the tax break now? Frankly I don't see what the point was. As a reward for renovating? Good, can residents get one if they upgrade their houses, too? ...(full comment)
The meeting and commentary will allow residents to make their opinions and questions known, to your Senate President and local Sen. , Stan Rosenberg. This is a critically needed session which will allow residents to voice their opinions and ask questions related to the Proposed NED pipeline. General consensus is that people see the pipeline as a step toward making the biggest infrastructure blunder in Mass. since the 1600s. The for profit, for export, multi state transit flammable pipeline set in your valley will take away lands and waters by destruction and damages, at build out and via strong arm on neighbors, protected lands, private lands, and state forests. NED will result in job loss, land and home loss, farm loss and much pride and vitality will also be lost in our dear communities. Our fire depts. have no equipment, no training or person power for a 200 foot high, 1000 foot wide, valley-wide blow up. For a short term solution, building it out across yards, farms, and even under the grid in an arrogant power play that will make Kinder Morgan richer at the cost of land, waters, and our precious farming community up and down the line. Berkshire Gas is a Spanish owned energy giant, Iberdrola, and gas is fetching $6.93 in Eur. in July, vesrus sub $3 here. Pumping via interstate transmission, not local delivery, ensures Iberdrola/ Berkshire can sell in 2 markets, get quick profits, and raise your rates when the Marcellus Shale find is depleted, in 5 or so years, who knows. It is not infrastructure; it is a short term power grab with long term effects here, on all our backs. Google: Kinder Morgan fined for dumping, bribing and even 5 lost lives of Water District Subcontractors, Walnut Creek, C A. Google, and start acting fast. Your Valley, state, and Water and next door neighbors will thank you. You deserve to be respected in your homes, your yards, your communities and by your service providers, your Gov.Baker and the FERC. ...(full comment)
Bluebird, I appreciate your concern but in overall radiation terms smart meters are nothing compared to cell phones, and are effectively lost in background radiation.
The benefits of smart meters may or may not justify their cost. Health effects shouldn't come into the argument. ...(full comment)