2013-10-18 / Letters

Mailer and ads misrepresent

To the editor:

At a time when we need to be concerned because our schools are next to oil tanks, opponents of the Waterfront Protection Ordinance claim there is “no proposed project.” The “proposed project” is a matter of public record. Any citizen can view Portland Pipe Line’s state permit on the Internet. Like the Waterfront Protection Ordinance, the state permit does not mention the words “tar sands,” but Portland Pipe Line has a permit to pump 5,880,000 gallons of it to our city every day.

Misleading campaign tactics by the oil industry sank to a new low last week with the widespread distribution of a mailer appearing to be a personal letter sent by a former city official, a mailer that violated Maine law by failing to state the name and address of the responsible campaign committee.

Opponents’ high-priced mailers and newspaper ads misrepresent both the economic impact and the meaning of the Waterfront Protection Ordinance. They fail to disclose that their $15,000 “economic study” is based on a false assumption. The author was instructed to assume that all oil businesses on the waterfront will shut down if the ordinance passes. False assumptions lead to false conclusions. The oil companies fail to disclose that the author of their purported “legal analysis” is the high-paid attorney for Portland Pipe Line. He wrongly claims that businesses on the waterfront will not be able to maintain and upgrade their equipment.

Our city prides itself on being business friendly. Let’s make our city a better place for all our businesses. Vote for the Waterfront Protection Ordinance on Nov. 5.

Linda Skinner
South Portland

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