Producer/Host: Meredith DeFrancesco
Issue: Environmental and Social Justice
Program Topic: The Penobscot Nation Appeals River Case and the Legislature Passes Solar Energy Bill LD 1649, But Still Needs a Larger Margin to Override Veto
Key Discussion Points:
1) This week, the Penobscot Nation, and the US Department of Justice, filed to appeal a US District Court decision that supports the State Of Maine’s efforts to sever the Tribe’s ties to the Penobscot River within their territory.
2) This past December, US District Court Judge George Singal decided on the highly controversial and historic case, Penobscot Nation v Janet Mills, Attorney General for the State of Maine. Despite state claims to the contrary, he affirmed that the Penobscot Tribe does have sustenance fishing rights in the Penobscot River, surrounding their reservation’s 200 islands. But on the issue of the river itself, he sided with the State, who claims the Tribe’s territory includes the islands, but not the Penobscot River which surrounds it.
3) Last week, the Maine Legislature passed LD 1649, An Act to Modernize Maine Solar Power Policy and Encourage Economic Development, but not by a large enough margin to stop Governor LePage’s promised veto. A second vote expected on next Friday, the 29th,provides one more chance for an override.
Kirk Francis, Chief of Penobscot Nation
Vaughn Woodruff, Insource Renewables