Bowdoin College helps make Brunswick a great place to live 

In his churlish column May 17, Jonathan Crimmins sniffed at Bowdoin’s $500,000 gift to the town and its $150,000 funding of a Discovery Classroom at the new Furbish Elementary School.  

First, yes, the contribution is voluntary. And neither Bates nor Colby College writes checks like this.  

But more importantly, the presence of Bowdoin in our town is what makes it, well, Brunswick, a magnet for well-heeled folks who buy retirement homes here and spend their money in our stores and restaurants.  It is the reason Maine State Music Theatre and the Bowdoin International Music Festival are here, bringing in thousands of patrons with their wallets. Our school children are able to use Bowdoin’s pool, track and museums. Bowdoin’s students and staff volunteer in our homeless shelter, nursing homes, and schools. Gifts from Bowdoin alumni help keep the campus fresh and beautiful, a welcome sight in the center of our town. 

The presence and influence of Bowdoin College is a big part of what makes Brunswick the best place to live in Maine.  

Wanda Webber Snyder, 

Brunswick 


Maine will benefit by locally controlling its energy utilities 

As a resident of Bath, a small business owner, I am writing in favor of a current bill in state legislature – LD 1646.  It is “An Act to Restore Local Ownership & Control of Maine’s Power Delivery Systems”-creating the Maine Power Delivery Authority. It creates a “consumer owned utility” -COU.  Its sponsor is Rep. Seth Berry of Bowdoinham.  

I support a “consumer owned utility”- COU- because the money generated by consumers stay here locally, strengthening Maine’s local economy rather than going to an overseas corporation.  COUs responsibilities are to their local customers/owners, not to large international corporations and their stockholders.

I know that we will continue to have large corporations operating in our lives, but as a small business owner, living in a small Maine city, I support local businesses as much as possible.  I find local businesses generally more reliable and responsive to their customers.  It they are not, they tend to be short-lived.  It is local people/neighbors who run these businesses.  As would be the case of the nine-member board overseeing the Maine COU.  And the control of the delivery of our electricity supply would be in Maine.  CMP is owned by a Spanish corporation, with stockholders in Norway, Qatar and Spain.

There are safeguards in LD 1646- among them, for the CMP and Emera employees, past and present, including their retirement plans.  It continues revenues to municipalities.  And, there are “models” around our state and country, of successful COUs and how they are run.  

LD 1646 takes on planning for our energy future.  It reduces delivery costs of electricity and would allow for greater investments in renewables and efficiency, which many in Maine, including myself, desire and know is essential for sustainability!  Maine needs to be strategic in how we plan for our energy future and 1646 is a quite detailed step in this direction.  I ask you to speak to your legislators and ask for their support on this. 

Susan Lubner, 

Bath