[NEWS] Maine Panel Issues Final Order in Biomass Fee Dispute
– by Ben Holbrook, September 14, 2016, Republican Journal
An end to a fee dispute between Central Maine Power Co. and Georges River Energy LLC, which is trying to build a biomass plant on Robbins Lumber Co. property in Searsmont, is in sight following a final ruling by a state panel early this month.
For several months, Georges River Energy, which is owned by the Robbins family, and CMP have engaged in a debate over how much the power company can charge to connect the 8.5-megawatt biomass plant, which has a net generating capacity of 7.5-megawatts, to the grid.
Central Maine Power wanted to charge GRE a monthly operations and maintenance fee of 1.38 percent, which the Robbinses estimated would total about $343,000 a year. If CMP assessed such a fee, the Robbinses said the financial viability of the plant could be threatened. Those fees are related to interconnection and distribution upgrade costs CMP will incur to connect the plant to the grid.