Of course they are continuing the front groups at YOUR expense, electric ratepayer!
See this op-ed in The Baltimore Sun. Dan Ervin of ShoreENERGY tells us that even though PJM has "suspended" PATH due to lack of need for the project, the power companies should build it anyhow. In his fantasy world, everyone is supposed to lean on the Maryland Public Service Commission and somehow the project will happen just like magic!
Who is Dan Ervin? He's a "member of Marylanders for Reliable Power." What is Marylanders for Reliable Power? It's PATH's ratepayer-funded Maryland front group. Ervin is happily spewing power company propaganda for a "coalition" that exists only on the internet, in the American Electric Power and FirstEnergy board rooms, and in the offices of PATH's public relations contractors. Marylanders for Reliable Power is a scam being perpetrated on both their members, who are unaware of where all the funding for their activities comes from; and on the millions of ratepayers in the PJM region who fund the "coalition", including Maryland electric customers!
As revealed in the Formal Challenge to Potomac-Appalachian Transmission Highline, LLC 2010 Formula Rate Annual Update (beginning on page 9), filed at FERC on January 21, 2011, these front groups are a PATH propaganda tool. PATH spent $682,048.66 on their three state front groups in 2009. The "coalitions" are not standalone legal entities; they do not legally exist as registered entities and therefore all financing of their activities comes directly from PATH. PATH in turn recovers their costs for these front groups from YOU in your electric bill.
The truth behind Marylanders for Reliable Power and the other front group "coalitions" was revealed in Exhibit-P of the Formal Challenge. Exhibit-P consists of PATH's purchase orders and contracts with The Artemis Group, who pulls the puppet strings on guys like Ervin on a daily basis; and Charles Ryan Associates, who "supervises" The Artemis Group in return for a healthy chunk of change every month. CRA also maintains the Marylanders for Reliable Power website.
Who does PATH think they're fooling at this point? And why is the funding of a front group "necessary to maintain the project in its current state"? The exorbitantly expensive and unnecessary propaganda and influence buying campaign continues!
Here's a task for our friends in Maryland (or any other fan of the truth, no matter where you live). Respond to Ervin, The Artemis Group, Charles Ryan Associates and PATH by writing your own op-ed about this farce and submitting it to the Baltimore Sun.
Just when I think PATH can't get any stupider, they continue to amaze me.