2005 December 9
by Marie Jones Holmes
The submerged land permit application submitted to the Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands on September 19 by Quoddy Bay LLC, the Oklahoma-based company that proposes to build a liquefied natural gas terminal (LNG) at Split Rock in Pleasant Point, has been tabled at this time. In submitting the application to the bureau, Quoddy Bay had indicated it had not completed its environmental reports. The bureau has asked the developer to table the application until it has completed the required applications to other state agencies.
Dan Pritchard, director of submerged lands at the Bureau of Parks and Lands, says, "It is the norm to have all permit applications submitted at the same time. Much of the information we would need to review an application for a submerged land permit is the same information other state agencies would need. During the process of reviewing the submerged land application, we ask specialists from other agencies for input."
Pritchard points out that the applications for various state permits require some sort of public forum, and it would be a savings for the state and a convenience for the public to review the entire proposal at one time.
Linda Godfrey, Save Passamaquoddy Bay coordinator, believes it may be a matter of convenience for the state to review the entire proposal at one time, but the issues are so significant that each step of the state's permitting process should have individual public input.
Pritchard says Brian Smith, project manager for Quoddy Bay LLC, is agreeable to holding off the submission of the submerged land permit application until all permit applications are ready.
Smith says, "Pritchard prefers to take the submerged land permit application with the other permit application, and we are very comfortable with this." Smith says the submerged land application is slightly different from the other permit applications so it was submitted first. "We are perfectly okay with this," comments Smith.