2016-12-09 / Letters

Thanks for property value concerns

To the editor:

True to form and right in line with the tantrums of Clinton supporters who are trying to invalidate Trump’s decisive electoral victory, Curtis Mildner mounted his high horse in his letter to the editor in the Kennebunk Post to attack Tom Murphy and accuse our group of lies, distortion, scare tactics and character assassination. Must be a shortage of mirrors in his home, for in that hit piece, Mildner proves that he is very adept at doing the same. Mildner starts off with the accusation that the results are invalid because no costs were associated with any of the questions.

To begin with, our questions were not about what expenditures the town should make, but about which direction the town should take. Secondly, no costs were included because no credible costs have been presented by Kennebunk Light and Power District. The report which KLPD predicates their decision on was produced by Wright-Pierce, which is a water and wastewater engineering firm that some regard as unqualified to prepare reports for the evaluation of hydropower options. Rumor also has it that the peer review done by GZA engineering was performed by an employee recently hired from Wright-Pierce.

If true, peer review now looks like rubber stamp. Then there is the influence of MKRA consultants to the report, as indicated by one of the slides (No. 23) in their timeline photos posted on their Facebook page.

Mildner then accelerates to the fictitious claim that the Mousam will look just like the lower section of the river after the dams come down. Using current conditions (dams and impoundments in place) as prima facie proof of what the river will be like after these are taken away is as preposterous as it is illogical.

Referencing computer-simulated images created by the MKRA to substantiate this only compounds this delusion. Thinking of this caliber would be more at home in the Magic Kingdom of Walt Disney than the down to earth topographical realities of Kennebunk. I can twist steel plate and I-beams into pretzels on my computer at work but that doesn’t mean it’s producible. The images we used illustrating the future Mudsam were done with real-time photos at the end of the last drawdown when KLPD paid Wright-Pierce $20,000 for two series of test holes for toxins only at the Kesslen.

I’m afraid his proofs are not exactly compelling evidence. Just the fact that the 3-mile lower section of the Mousam has twice the slope of the practically flat 6-mile upper section makes his claim impossible.

Sorry Mr. Mildner, just because you were in sales at CMP for five years doesn’t make you a civil engineer. I have witnessed at least four complete drawdowns and have nearly 30 years of experience with a number of civil engineering firms and I can confidently tell you that you have no idea what you’re talking about.

Even if your forecast were true, the town has overwhelming voted that they like the river just the way it is. Since you are outraged that the actual fish count in the Mousam is contrary to the MKRA propaganda, I recommend that you take it up with Alden Laboratories who based their report for the KLPD on the Wells Reserve count and concluded that fish ladders are simply not warranted.

It was also amusing to see that Mr. Mildner is now such a fan of the KLPD. When running for a seat on the board of trustees in June 2015, he was quoted in this paper as saying that the trustees are not doing it right and have gotten themselves into quite a mess.

With the prospect of marginal savings to the ratepayers, he thinks the river should run free but that he also has friends who live on the river whose property values would be negatively affected. He admitted to having a bias, but not a very strong one (see June 5, 2015 Kennebunk Post).

Looks like his opinion has changed. I guess drinking the MKRA Kool-Aid has had quite an effect – and thanks by the way for affirming our concerns about property devaluations.

As for his rebuke to Murphy, it only served to remind me of the vice-presidential debate in 1988 between Sens. Lloyd Bentson and Dan Quale when Quale audaciously likened himself to John Kennedy, to which Bentson replied: “I knew John Kennedy. John Kennedy was a friend of mine, and you Mr. Quale are no John Kennedy.” You may not like the results of the vote and you may not like Tom Murphy and I’m sure you will subject us to more tantrums, but I can tell you one thing Mr. Mildner, Tom Murphy has something you will never have in this town: stature.

Shawn Teague

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