New England’s governors gather in Maine

Posted Sept. 15, 2008, at 2:29 p.m.
Last modified Jan. 28, 2011, at 12:29 p.m.

BAR HARBOR, Maine — New England’s governors and premiers from eastern Canada began arriving in this coastal resort town Monday for their two-day meeting, but with no formal events scheduled the initial day they polished their golf swings and reconnected with their fellow chief executives.<

Talks during Tuesday's all-day agenda for the group's 32nd annual conference will focus on energy, economic development and transportation issues that face both regions. Monday's agenda called only for golf, registration and a late-afternoon reception.<

“It's about networking so they can get down to a personal level before they get down to business,” said Joy Leach, a spokeswoman for Maine Gov. John Baldacci, who is co-chairing the event with New Brunswick Premier Shawn Graham.<

The meetings rotate each year between a New England state and one of the eastern Canada provinces. Last year's conference was held in Prince Edward Island, whose Premier Robert W.J. Ghiz was the only one of the five Canadian and six American leaders to cancel plans to attend this year's event as of Monday.<

Baldacci called the conference “an historic opportunity for us to share ideas, work toward common goals and to build relationships. While each state and province faces unique challenges, we are all connected by economics, culture and geography. We are all stronger when we recognize those similarities and build upon them.”<

The U.S. Ambassador to Canada David Wilkins, and the Canadian ambassador to the United States, Michael Wilson, were both planning to address a session Tuesday to discuss relations between the two countries.<

Highlighting the importance of energy issues, the head of New England's and New Brunswick's power generation and transmission systems and Hydro Quebec USA plan to lead a panel to discuss a regional energy electricity system.<

Maine's membership in ISO New England has come under question in Maine, where Baldacci earlier this year signed into law a bill that sets the stage for Maine's possible withdrawal. The law triggers action if the state Public Utilities Commission determines that ending Maine's membership is the state's best interest.<

Sessions Tuesday will also look at transportation connections between the two regions, opportunities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in transportation and regional economic issues.<

SEE COMMENTS →

ADVERTISEMENT | Grow your business
ADVERTISEMENT | Grow your business

Similar Articles

More in State