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NARRAGANSETT â€“ In light recent public hearings by the Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council and the Ocean Special Area Management Plan Subcommittee that allegedly did not follow the councilâ€™s own regulations, Narragansett resident and chair of Deepwater Resistance, a Rhode Island political action committee, Robert Shields, has filed a formal complaint with the state Superior Court.
The complaint comes as a result of the original proposal by Deepwater Wind, LLC to construct a 30-megawatt wind farm 3 miles southeast of Block Island.
Public hearings for the project were held Feb. 4, 24, and 27 of this year. According to Shieldâ€™s complaint, filed on July 11, 2014, the subcommittee violated its own regulations whenChair Anne Livingston and council member Donald Gomez repeatedly interrupted Shieldsâ€™ testimony in opposition to the project, claiming that his discussion of the financial impacts were not relevant or within their jurisdiction. According to Shieldsâ€™ complaint report, he attempted to speak at multiple hearings afterward on the subcommitteeâ€™s failure to allow public comment on the net economic impact statewide, the engineering deficiencies of Deepwater Windâ€™s proposal, and the failure of the CRMC staff report to address various technical problems with Deepwater Windâ€™s proposal. Shieldâ€™s said that although the committee asked him to not comment on anything regarding the projectâ€™s economics, he felt there were strong financial implications that would negatively impact the community.