NH SEC 2015-06 Adjudicative Hearing – Day 70

December 28, 2017 | By | Reply More

Concord, NH – Thursday brings the SEC adjudicative hearings to a close, as the SEC panel transitions to begin it’s public deliberation in the coming weeks. Highlights of Thursday’s witness testimony were from Dr. Rick Van de Poll for Municipal Group 3-South, and witness Brian Murphy of Municipal Group 2.

The Pemigewasset River Group also took the witness stand to finish the day, and witness Mr. Draper, who had previously in the hearings displayed live tadpoles, happily presented a second round of unique evidence in the form of a live insect display to highlight the importance of access to water for insects and amphibians. Indicating that expanding the right of way for the project would fragment not only insects access, but birds, snakes, and other reptiles.

During Attorney Walker’s examination of Dr. Rick Van de Poll, discussions between differences of methodology were raised. Attorney Walker asked Dr. Van de Poll whether he was aware of the fact that the Army Corps of Engineers surveyed the wetlands in Concord. Witness Van der Poll states that he is aware. Attorney Walker asks if Dr. Van de Poll believes that aerial photographs are more accurate than the field survey performed by the Army Corps of Engineers – Dr. Van de Poll states that Field surveys are more accurate generally.

Attorney Walker continued the discussion on methodology by asking Dr. Van de Poll by asking whether he used a Garmin device, which which has an accuracy margin of 15 meters – contrasting that the Applicant’s expert Normandeau used a far more accurate device. Dr. Van de Poll stated that the Garmin was more accurate than Attorney Walker asserted, but ddi admit that the device that was used by the Applicant’s experts was more accurate when they performed their wetlands delineation.

Addressing Dr. Van de Poll’s concerns about the accurate monitoring of the Concord, Attorney Walker lists requirements that the project must adhere to in order to be in compliance with their permit, should it be granted by the SEC. Attorney Walker also asks if Dr. Van de Poll still feels that the DES will not be able to sufficiently monitor restoration efforts, even with all of the requirements and procedures that must be adhered to. Witness Van de Poll maintains that he is aware of the conditions the Project has agreed to uphold, and that he believes that the DES will not be able to monitor restoration efforts.

During the Applicant’s questions to witness Brian Murphy of Municipal Group 2, Attorney Needleman shows public video of Mike Conklin, Selectboard Chairman of Plymouth in which Mr. Conklin states “We are not going to talk to [the] project, we are just going to do what we can in our intervenor group to shoo them away.” Attorney Needleman asks the witness if he knows that the project gave Plymouth 3 alternatives to the original project route, which would have moved the route away from Main Street, and that the town did not engage with the Applicant to see what the other options were.

Attorney Needleman then presents the witnesses pre-filed testimony where Mr. Murphy stated that the Applicant did not present any alternative routes. However, the town rejected alternative routes, and it wouldn’t be accurate to say that the NPT “Did not consider any reasonable alternatives.”


Category: IBEW Local 104, New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee, Northern Pass, Site Evaluation Committee

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