Integrity Of Key Players In UMaine Bidding Process?

Update 2.22.18

BDN reports “UMaine chooses new energy supplier as controversial bidder withdraws.” Read more HERE.

2.5.18

Serious points to ponder….

As with members of Congress/officials, Maine legislators/officials are “unaware” of “key players?”

“Players” in place today were “players” decades ago.

James W. Sewell is involved with the UMaine saga. View MOST POWERFUL REVEALING VIDEO BY TOM DUNN (at 5:30) Sewell has been around for a long time!

John Richardson, when Speaker of the House, met with a constituent from Maine, was presented with documentation relative to fraud/theft of property. Richardson reviewed the documentation and recognized the fraud. He stated the court judgments “could be easily overturned.” Yet, he refused to assist as an attorney, a lawmaker, or Speaker of the House, and refused to seek an AG investigation into the frauds, with the same old phrase “there’s nothing I can do.” Can we trust/believe John Richardson?

(Now former) Senator Barry Hobbins is also complicit in the cover up of frauds perpetrated upon Mainers.

Yesterday story broke on “Secret recordings point to improper influence by top UMaine official in lucrative power contract” A university official was said to be coaching ConEdison, the winning bidder for a multimillion-dollar energy deal involving the Orono campus and an abandoned Old Town paper mill.

The Maine Sunday Telegram obtained several recordings of conference calls with participants connected to ConEdison, the company that ultimately won the bid. It’s unclear from the recordings how many meetings or conversations UMaine had with ConEd and its allies. The allies include investors, Richardson, CVG and ConEd representatives, but also James W. Sewall Co., an engineering firm in Old Town that previously employed top UMaine officials, including the chancellor.

Sewall’s CEO is involved in a lawsuit over the sale of the Old Town mill – the asset on which ConEd’s entire bid rests.

Richardson also makes reference to the importance of telling LePage that CVG – owned by the Gardner, Carrier and Varney families – is involved in the venture, saying that the governor wouldn’t cross them.

The family-owned businesses are economic pillars in northern Maine, with vast timberland ownerships, logging, trucking and wood chip operations. But Richardson’s comments were a reference to their political support for LePage. All three families have contributed to LePage’s gubernatorial campaigns. Together they donated more than $14,000 to his 2014 election, state records show.

It was reported today that “Lawmakers are calling for an investigation into revelations that a University of Maine official provided inside information to help steer a lucrative energy contract for the Orono campus to one bidder.”

So now, “after the catch”, “the university system’s board of trustees is asking its audit committee to examine the same allegations, which arose from  a Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram report  that chronicles statements made during secret, recorded phone conversations by a business consultant working with the winning bidder. ”

“The conversations took place last year on business conference calls and indicate that Jake Ward, UMaine’s vice president for innovation and economic development, communicated with and coached partners of ConEdison Solutions. ConEdison is a New York firm that had developed a plan to power the Orono campus with wood-fired steam and electricity from an abandoned paper mill in neighboring Old Town. It estimated that the plan could lead to a multiyear contract worth from $100 million to $150 million. ”

“Ward, who has denied that he provided any insider information to anyone, wasn’t on the calls. But other people who were – notably John Richardson, a former legislative leader and economic development commissioner who has been working with a ConEd partner.”

Richardson has declined to comment on the matter, citing a non-disclosure agreement.”

Meanwhile, the co-chairs of the legislative committee that oversees education issues are calling for an investigation into the charges raised by the newspaper’s report.

“It’s incredibly important that our public university conducts itself in a fair, evenhanded and transparent fashion in all of its dealings,” said Rep. Tori Kornfield, D-Bangor. “These are serious allegations, and I look forward to all of the relevant facts coming to light.

Key players in the UMaine-ConEd bid

Jake Ward: UMaine vice president for innovation and economic development. Said to have offered inside information to ConEdison Solutions and its team on how to win the competition for a lucrative University of Maine energy contract involving an abandoned Old Town paper mill. ConEdison Solutions: New York energy services company, which won the bid to […]

Jake Ward: UMaine vice president for innovation and economic development. Said to have offered inside information to ConEdison Solutions and its team on how to win the competition for a lucrative University of Maine energy contract involving an abandoned Old Town paper mill.

ConEdison Solutions: New York energy services company, which won the bid to negotiate a $100 million contract. Point person on the UMaine contract is Ward Strosser, Northeast regional sales manager.

CVG Inc.: Trio of major Maine timberland owners working with ConEd on a mill takeover. Family companies are headed by Jean Carrier, Tim Varney and Tom Gardner, all financial contributors to Gov. Paul LePage.

John Richardson: Brunswick lawyer and energy consultant representing CVG. Former House speaker and ex-commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development.

James W. Sewall Co.: Old Town engineering firm allied with ConEd and CVG on the Old Town mill energy contract. Senior management has employment ties to UMaine.

OTM Holdings: Purchased the Old Town mill in late January. Deed documents indicate it and a related entity, Powerhouse Holdings LLC, are aligned with ConEd

The integrity, or lack thereof, extends beyond employees of UMaine.

Will people/Mainers allow the “guise” to continue?

Published in: on February 5, 2018 at 10:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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