I spent my entire adult life working for large national and international companies that constantly worked to expand their services to new geographical locations. To do this, they had people whose jobs were to make sure that the company would be successful in the new location. These companies had strategic planners, economic and sociological data analyzers, local and regional regulation experts and, in some cases, those who could map the underground geological structure of the new area.

But we are expected to believe that a large national company — Summit Natural Gas — didn’t know before it got to Maine that the state had rock ledge that it would need to drill through, or that rivers needed to be crossed, nor the cost of doing these things. Therefore, the company didn’t have enough qualified technicians who were qualified to connect the natural gas pipes to homes and not damage sewer lines.

And we are told that Summit didn’t realize that thousands of residents who have never had or used natural gas service would need to be educated before they would make a change from home heating oil. The worst part is that each of these “unexpected” problems is costing Summit profits that will need to be passed along to their customers somewhere down the road.

I really have a hard time believing that Summit Natural Gas is that ignorant about how to run its business. And maybe it isn’t, and instead is expecting that Mainers are too ignorant to notice what it is really doing. If so, it will be sadly mistaken.

Glenn M. Oxley

Waterville

filed under: