The fact of the matter is: CLF’s arguments have been unsuccessful in each and every regulatory proceeding to date. This has led to CLF’s appeal of all decisions in hopes of dragging out the procedural process so that Footprint will not be able to construct the plant by June of 2016. I feel compelled as the state representative of Salem to do whatever I can to ensure this plant’s construction, not only for my city and my constituents, but so the commonwealth may avoid a serious threat to the reliability of the electric grid.
CLF says that it is “sad that Chairman Keenan has held hostage a gas leaks safety bill with a provision to help his district.” I think it is sad that CLF is holding the city of Salem hostage while it pursues a divisive litigation strategy. If CLF truly cared about the environmental safety and health of our commonwealth, it would be focusing its efforts on how to help communities like Salem, Somerset, Holyoke and others that are saddled with decommissioning power plants — instead, CLF has refused to engage us in any sort of productive manner. And that’s a shame.
Rep. John Keenan represents the City of Salem in the state House of Representatives. He has served as House Chairman of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy since 2011.