Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Dorchester Tourist Board’s Blatant Lie

I received this information recently from one of my readers in Dorchester County. It is an e-mail message generated by the Dorchester Tourist Board making their opposition to MAPP known. It is titled, “A Shore Worth Saving: Preserving our Past, Protecting our Future.”

As I have stated before in this blog:
“The success of a Democracy is based on the art of truth.”

The picture of the transmission tower was very prevalent in their e-mail, but is in no way accurate of what is being proposed by Delmarva Power. In fact, it represents a blatant lie and its only purpose is to play on the emotions of uninformed citizens of Dorchester County. As with much of those whom are in opposition to MAPP, they are still propagating misleading, and inaccurate information with the hopes of directing the citizens of Dorchester to be in opposition also. As I have asked before and will ask again, “What do THEY have to gain?”

This photo is exactly what Delmarva Power is proposing. The two top lines are for lighting protection. It is just two lines because the AC (alternating current) will be rectified on the Western Shore to DC (direct current, positive and negative). It will come under the bay to Dorchester County but will still be two lines of DC being supported by a single steel pole until it reaches Vienna. This is where it will be inverted back into AC and then follows the existing right-of-ways to the other locations through out the Delmarva Peninsula. The bottom three lines are the typical three phase electrical power line going to your house, work, etc. You could also run telephone and cable TV lines on these electric poles also. As you can see, crops are being grown right underneath the power lines, chickens are being raised close by, etc. So when the opponents make claims to the opposite, as you can well see, it is not even close to being accurate. THEY ARE LYING TO THE CITIZENS OF DORCHESTER COUNTY SO WHAT DO THEY HAVE TO GAIN?!?

The reality is quite a big difference to what the Dorchester Tourist Board’s lie that they were trying to pass off. If their message cannot stand up to the light of truth, then it is not much of an argument in the first place and should be ignored.

The Dorchester Tourist Board goes on to imply that the area where Harriet Tubman grew up, escaped slavery and started her mission to lead other slaves into freedom, will be irrevocably harmed and destroyed. So I guess those of the Dorchester Tourist Board would want the citizens Dorchester County today to have the exact same access to reliable and stable electric power that Harriet Tubman had access to in her time. This of course would be NONE! The members of the Dorchester Tourist Board are presenting their argument with the intellectual stupidly equal to those characters from the “Hee Haw” TV show. One can only wonder what the conversations must be like in that office, “We wants to keep this area real purddy.”

Now it is time to ask the question to the “Hee Haw” Dorchester Country Tourist Board, “In your twenty plus years that I know of being funded by the citizens of Dorchester; what of any significance do you have to show for this investment and please don’t point to the Hyatt because you really had nothing to do with that. What you ARE proposing would make sure that the Hyatt would not have an adequate supply of electrical power for the place to operate. Maybe it should be time to disband this waste of government tax payer’s money.”
In summation, I know that there have been many directors that have come and gone with nothing to show for our efforts. Now you want to direct your recourses and manpower to make sure that the citizens of Delmarva, especially Dorchester County, will not have reliable and stable electric power? Please note again that this opposition effort is using our tax payer’s dollars and is all based on a blatant lie. In the least, a severe budget cut should be in order.

I think that this should become a very big campaign issue in our next election in 2010.


  1. I can't believe the tourism people would mislead everyone with that ridiculous photo. It's obvious they searched for the ugliest possible power lines anyone can imagine. More of our tax dollars at work. Aren't they considering putting this power line underground anyway? Why are we wasting our tax dollars on this?

  2. There is no possible argument for the depreciation of property when these lines are installed. They will only pay for the actual right of way width of 200 t 300 ft.
    In fact the entire plat will be depreciated forever.
    That is why the people are against it.

  3. Reply from Jonathan Travers:

    Anonymous #1
    You are correct that it so sad that the best argument for the Dorchester Tourism Board was to find the worst photo of a transmission line that is misleading the citizens of Dorchester. In fact it is just another lie that the opposition is putting forth. You also bring up a very good point with regards to Delmarva Power trying to work with the people going to be effected in Dorchester. Delmarva Power has been presenting burying the power lines underground. Delmarva Power has been more that willing to try to work with the NIMBY (No In My Back Yard) opponents.

    The opposition has not presented any viable alternative on how to replace the loss of generated power for the Delmarva Peninsula. Their debates are more in line with Jerry Springer than the more intellectual Charlie Rose.

    Anonymous #2
    Thank you for posting your comment. Even before this posting, Delmarva Power has been willing to bury the transmission power lines that will run from the Chesapeake Bay to Vienna as mentioned by Anonymous #1 above. My posting was more to the point of Dorchester Tourist Board presenting lies and I countered with what Delmarva Power was offering should the transmission power lines go this type of route. With the power lines being buried they will not be in view at all. The rest of the existing power transmission line right-of-ways have been in existence for more than 80 years so any transmission power lines utilizing these right-of-ways would not be affected. Real estate property have been bought and sold a couple times over with these power lines on them and I am sure the new buyers saw the power lines on the property when it was purchased.

    You make mention with reference to depreciation of property but there are many examples of transmission power conductors being buried supplying Large Cities, Large Towns, Small Towns, Housing Suburbs, Industry and businesses that has not affected the price of real estate property at all. An example would be like saying the real estate in Manhattan is worth less be cause of the subways below the streets. This is also where the high voltage power conductors are buried along with water and sewer lines. Where do you think the electric power comes from to supply these municipalities?

    Transmission power lines being buried 20’ below farm land in Dorchester is not any different. I am sure that someone who owns a 200 acre farm with no power lines in Dorchester would gladly trade even up for just one city block in Manhattan, or downtown New York. With these examples to measure by, your argument is weak at best.

    Now what would really depreciate property values is not allowing growth in Dorchester as the county’s business plan stands right now. This is more of a reason that Dorchester property will be worth less than it could have the potential of becoming. If you do not allow growth, there is no demand.

    To say it another way, "No population growth, No business growth!" "No business growth, No tax revenue growth!"

    Now Dorchester just becomes a self perpetuation poverty, or at best low income wages with companies coming and then leaving after their 10 year tax deduction runs out, population area.

    Now if you add inadequate electric power to be supplied to the existing properties now….well no one wants a fulltime home with these conditions.

    Again, thank you for your input as my readers do appreciate the points / counterpoints comments.

  4. Mr. Travers, If you had as reliable information as you thought you had, you would know that Delmarva Power super imposed these poles onto a farming photo. This is not a true photo. It is actually a picture of a farm in Wicomico County with no Powerlines around. IN FACT farming soils are harmed by the intrusion of clay based soils being brought up and spread out throughout the right of way leaving a soil base inadequate for proper plant growth. Chicken companies have expressed concern with the new computer run houses not functioning correctly. Delmarva Power has also stated their concern with installing these lines next to existing Poultry operations. For the citizens of Dorchester County there are many Environmental and Economic impacts from this project as it is proposed. We need to truly look at other alternative routes and different ways to solve our energy needs. What THEY have to gain is keeping this County preserved in its natural state as Generation have done in the past. My name is Wendell Meekins Jr. and if you would like to further discuss the WHY'S of our opposition feel free to contact me or visit the website In the future in your blogs you should consider getting all of the information before passing jugdement.

  5. Mr. Meekins, what does that have to do with the point of his posting? He is pointing out that our GOVERNMENT is lying about this project. I don't understand why they are trying to make this seem so much worse. Farmers have been farming under power lines for years...I don't appreciate my elected leaders spending tax dollars for this. Some farmers have already signed up to sell their land. Give me a break!

  6. Reply from Jonathan Travers:

    Dear Mr. Wendell Meekins,
    First off I want to thank you for commenting on the blog. It is through open discussion that we truly learn.

    You stated, “If you had as reliable information as you thought you had, you would know that Delmarva Power super imposed these poles onto a farming photo. This is not a true photo. It is actually a picture of a farm in Wicomico County with no Powerlines around.”

    Counter Point:
    Yes it is super imposed because as we ALL know, NONE has been built yet. As I have stated in the above comment, if this WERE to be what is built above ground, it would look more like what I displayed instead of the misrepresentation that the Dorchester Tourist Board had shown. But again this is a mute point, as I have made the point in the above reply; Delmarva Power has offered to bury the conductor.

    You stated, “Chicken companies have expressed concern with the new computer run houses not functioning correctly.”

    Counter Point:
    If the micro processors have been installed correctly, they would be shielded not only in a proper NEMA enclosure, but with shielded cable carrying the low voltage signals to the micro processors. These micro processors have more of a danger from lighting strikes than the buried and enclosed with the thickness of the insulation required for the buried power line conductors.

    You state, “We need to truly look at other alternative routes and different ways to solve our energy needs. What THEY have to gain is keeping this County preserved in its natural state as Generation have done in the past.”

    Counter Point:
    On the first statement, I agree with you as this is a very true comment.” When it comes to our energy needs, you never want to put all of your eggs, so to speak,” in one basket. Diversity in electric power generation is very important. With much of the Delmarva Peninsula’s electric generated power coming from coal or oil burning power plants that are being shut down in the Wilmington / Philadelphia area, is what has put us in this situation in the first place. We need to find stable and constant electrical power generation to replace what will soon be lost….and quickly. Off shore wind mills, solar panels, etc. but you still need the transmissions lines to get the generated power to where it is to be used. So to restate, the transmission line will still be in the factor.

    But to say that you want Dorchester to say the same forever (or preserved in its natural state as Generations have done in the past) is a statement that does not have much foresight. There is only one constant….and that constant is change. If things do not change, nothing gets better. It is like saying that you wish your children stayed little and cute forever. I wanted mine to grow up, become educated, get married, have children, and become productive citizens of society. That would make me very proud of them. :-)

    If Dorchester were to have stayed the same over the years…we would all be riding on dirt roads with horse droppings every few feet, we would make our living over fishing the bay’s resources.

    Dorchester has changed greatly over the 65 plus years I have been living here. Example being, just take a look how sad and depressed Cambridge has become in general. This is still change whether the “Generations did not want it to in the past,” and not for the better I think you would agree with this statement. You add erratic and inconstant electric generated power because it was not replaced; you now have a third world issue.

    So Mr. Wendell Meekins, I want to thank you again for your comments and allowing me to present my counter points. I have enjoyed this very much.

  7. Mr. Travers in your statement under the proposed picture from Delmarva Power you say As you can see crops are being grown right under the powerlines (really Transmission Lines) Chickens are being raised close by Etc. As you admit this is a super imposed picture that statement is a little misleading wouldnt you say. This has been the situation the whole way through this proposed project. Misleading information, conflicting proposals and here say. Delmarva Power has never actually proposed a real underground line. The Buyers for the right of way will not deal with an underground line, and as I here their not having any luck. They state they are TRYING to purchase Above Ground Only. You make the statement NIMBY which in my opinion is very insulting to Dorchester County residents. Our Governors of nine states on the Eastern seaboard have stated in a letter that these proposed Transmission lines would bring cheap coal fired energy essentially making wind energy and other greener sources of power generations unable to compete in this market place. There should be a truly comprehensive review process put into effect to study all the impacts and alternatives before anything is done. People reading these blogs should truly research all pros and cons before coming to any conclusions. I have an opinion as does Mr. Travers. I can say this and he can say that. Dorchester County residents have to weigh what they have against all that this could change. In the End they have to live with the outcome.

  8. I agree that Dorchester County residents should weigh all the facts and one of the facts is that what Mr. Meekins is proposing is going to cost all of us a lot more in our electric bills. I think that is the people of Dorchester County had a choice, they would choose NOT to pay more for their electricity. I don't know how a few landowners can justify making the rest of us pay more. This project seems to be the least environmentally damaging way of getting us power, yet the environmentalists still fight it. Wouldn't massive wind turbines in everyone's backyard alter our landscape more than a power line? And still they wouldn't be able to provide us the power we need because the wind doesn't always blow.

  9. Why are they even bothering to bring tourists to Dorchester County? I'm pretty sure they are going to want a hot shower and a warm meal and hotel room. All of these require power. Maybe Dorchester County should just roll up the sidewalks and take down the Welcome sign. It makes no sense to me why the County Council would fund a tourism office and fight a project to bring reliable power to the county. Why are they funding an economic development office then too? And the city of Cambridge has its own economic development office too.

  10. Reply from Jonathan Travers:

    Hello Anonymous #3
    I do appreciate you pointing this out as you are correct on the statement that I said, “As you can see….” I am an old man and get tired after a while. Thank you again for pointing out how this was miss interpreted.

    What the statement was meant to say was to repeat the comment from an earlier posting, “You can see crops growing under 138 - 230kV transmission lines with chicken houses next to and under these transmission power lines right now in Dorchester County.” It has not been an issue in the past and would not be an issue in the future. With the higher voltage, you just make a larger distance between phase to phase and phase to ground spacing.

    You made the statement, “Transmission lines would bring cheap coal fired energy essentially making wind energy and other greener sources of power generations unable to compete in this market place.”

    Counter Point:
    If you will take note in the earlier posting, “It is the coal and oil fired electrical generation in the Wilmington / Philadelphia area that are being taken off line because they are no longer cost effective. This is where the vast majority of electrically generated power for the Delmarva Peninsula has come from in the past. I go on to note that 4% of the electricity supplied to the Mid-Atlantic Power Grid right now (which Delmarva’s electric power is a part of) is from windmill, photovoltaic, landfill gas and GROWING exponentially everyday with new permits in the works. A perfect example going on right now as we speak is a windmill array in Western Maryland being built right next to an area that is currently being stripped mined for coal. The wind mill and photovoltaic type of electric generation is rapidly becoming cheaper than coal even in the coal regions. So in summation, your statement is very inaccurate and only DIRVERTS the argument from the matter at hand. I have said this before and it needs to be said again, “It does not matter if the electric generation is from hydrocarbon fuel or green energy…. You still need the transmission power lines to deliver this generated power!”

  11. Continuation Reply from Jonathan Travers:

    As far as being offended with the acronym NIMBY, for me is no different as USMC, USN, FBI, CIA, AFLCIO, etc. It is the group that does not want the MAPP transmission line because it is a new run in their area of Dorchester. Hence (Not In My Back Yard). There was no such opposition from those whom are now speaking out on transmission lines when it ran across other’s properties in Dorchester. Even though I live close to the Chesapeake Bay in another part of the county, all one needs to do is take a look at the steel distribution power lines between Hurlock and Federalsburg. Other than the difference in voltage, this is a good example of what we are speaking about. Where was the excited opposition speaking out when this was being constructed? Does the whole county put their selves in potential electrical supply jeopardy just to cow tow to this, relatively speaking, small handful of people.

    In summation the appearance of attitude from this small group is, “If it is in someone else’s area of Dorchester it is OK with me; but if it comes into my area then I can think of all kinds of terrible things it will do to farmland, and chicken houses, wooded areas, etc.” I am of the mind that if the transmission lines were to be run in another location of Dorchester to become someone else’s problem (or Delmarva in general) those whom are excitedly speaking out now, would breath a sigh of relief and quietly go away and never make another sound FOR FEAR if they did, it might come back to their area. This has been a problem with the attitudes of many citizens in Dorchester County on many other issues in the past.

    To conclude on these thoughts stated above, with reference to the acronym “NIMBY,” I did not coin the phrase but will take into consider your statement of being offended and will refrain from using it again in the future.

    You then close with the statement, “Dorchester County residents have to weigh what they have against all that this could change. In the End they have to live with the outcome.” I think that this is a VERY good statement and I applaud you for making it. Good Job! As I have said before and it is worth repeating, the real issue is that we are going to loose much of the generation electric power that we have been receiving up to now and it needs to be replaced just to keep the status quo. This does not allow for any growth and Dorchester needs growth.

    There is an old business adage, “If you are not growing, you are dying.” I say the Business of Government is still Business and Dorchester has been dying a slow death of reversed growth with industry and businesses leaving, stores closing, and the average annual income for a citizen of Dorchester has been dropping long before this current national recession. Now if you remove from this scenario viable electric power, this could very well be the final factor for Dorchester County. Then whatever we ALL have financially invested in our county, will be worth next to nothing and we all loose.

    Now let’s get back to the ORGINAL topic of the posting. To think that the County Government has allocated $7,500 from the budget of 2010 and using County Resources through the Tourist Board to propagate this scenario that would restrict viable electric power just to placate a small group of citizens of Dorchester, is a mindless and egregious waste of the few tax dollars that we are able to obtain from the citizens of this county. I pay more than most in property and other taxes in Dorchester and I am glad to do my part. I DO take great exception though when I see these tax dollars wasted as such. If this group in opposition wants to fight MAPP using their own money I say fine. I DO feel that it is too much for this group to think that they are entitled to County Tax Dollars to fight their cause. When the true facts are presented and explained to citizens of Dorchester that I have spoken with, this “Small Group in Opposition” is not the majority in Dorchester.

  12. Mr. Travers , Is your main sponsor Delmarva Power or Pepco.