Though Graham Lake and the Union River are special places that are important to many of our friends in Ellsworth and Hancock County, it’s not always easy to tell that there are people looking out for them. It’s been over seven years since the federal licensing process for the Union River’s hydroelectric dams began, and at times it has seemed like the process will go on another seven years. Thankfully, Sen. Louie Luchini and Rep. Nicole Grohoski helped focus attention on the health of Graham Lake and the Union River and move the process along.
Two years ago, they sponsored LD 1687 – An Act Regarding the Water Quality Certification of Graham Lake on the Union River. Though the bill did not ultimately pass into law, it was not without life. It was vigorously presented in Augusta to a legislative committee by Sen. Luchini, Rep. Grohoski and many other community members. We at the Friends of Graham Lake believe that this public hearing helped the Maine Department of Environmental Protection focus attention on the Union River and Graham Lake during their review of the Union River dams’ Water Quality Certificate — a certificate the Department of Environmental Protection denied because of poor water quality in both the lake and river. You may vote for whom you like in the coming elections, but send a note of thanks to Sen. Luchini and Rep. Grohoski for looking out for the Union River, Graham Lake and their residents — both people and fish!