Oxford residents against a proposed power plant said they’re going to keep fighting the plan, even as the town says it is a done deal.
Just a few weeks ago, town residents narrowly voted down a tax agreement that would have paid Oxford $112 million over the next 22 years.
They said that ‘no’ vote is a sign to the developer that the power plant isn’t wanted, but the town said it is going to happen.
"There is no amount of tax revenue that would make me want a power plant that could jeopardize the health and safety of my children,” said Laura Blair, of Oxford.
She said the power plant doesn’t fit the rural image she envisioned for her family when they moved to Oxford 10 years ago.
The developer, CPV, already has the permits from the Connecticut Siting Council and the DEEP to build the Towantic Energy Center off Woodruff Road. Those are now being appealed.
"We're all tired of hearing Mr. Temple say ‘it’s a done deal and there is nothing you can do about it’,” said Wayne McCormick.
Earlier this month, voters said “no” to payment in lieu of taxes, in which CPV would have paid the town about $5 million per year for 22 years.
Opponents said just the proposal is already hurting the town when it comes to the construction of new homes nearby.
Paul Coward said he believes people aren’t buying in Oxford Greens because of the power plant.
"It makes common economic sense to reject the agreement which has been done twice already and to tell CPV to take a hike,” Coward said.
Even with the defeat, Oxford First Selectman George Temple said the town has an agreement with the developer. He has already met with CPV to see what comes next.
"We can re-negotiate, put that new agreement out for a referendum,” Temple said. “Leave it alone and keep the money we have, or get what's called a declaratory judgment tax appeal and let a judge say what is or isn't fair."
Whatever happens next, it won’t change the mind of many, like Blair.
"The threat of pollution, the threat of ground water, I'm on a well. It’s not needed for Oxford, not needed for Connecticut and I just don't want the power plant at all,” Blair said.
Temple said he will continue to talk with the developer.
Meanwhile, those against the plan said they will continue to keep the pressure on.
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