By Paul Garrod
A letter received last Friday, April 21, addressed to a Grand Rapids law firm representing the Save Our Trees: Stop the Power Line members, stated that Consumers Energy was not pursuing the proposed 20-mile route through Almena Antwerp, Paw Paw and Lawrence townships to provide increased power to the Lawrence-Crandall Business Centre.
“Many in the group are skeptical of the letter,” according to group member Tammy Tapper, of Paw Paw. She said, “Consumers Energy has created distrust amongst many property owners along the proposed route. Rightfully so. Why should we trust them now, and their ‘alternative solutions’?? The timing of this letter is quite curious … it came approximately two hours before several of us were to meet with Sen. Sean McCann, and one day prior to us staging a protest at Consumers Energy, Kalamazoo,” said Tapper.
“I did receive an e-mail from State Rep. Pauline Wendzel Monday morning, April 24, stating, “they (Consumers Energy) haven’t developed a new route, but said they were back in talks with AEP … from what my staff re from the town hall, it would seem Consumers and AEP cutting a deal would be the best-case scenario.”
Tapper said she is “anxiously awaiting Consumers Energy’s public announcement of the new route. Fingers crossed.”
The letter from Kelly M. Hall, Consumers Energy, Deputy General Counsel and Vice President, Rates & Regulatory, read in part: “I am writing to let you know that Consumers Energy has decided not to pursue the original route referenced in your letter. The alternative solutions we are considering will not impact the property owners which would have been affected by the originally planned route.”