Natural gas status

09/05/2014

Editor,

Whatever happened to the schedule to convert Ocean Pines to natural gas in the fall of 2013?

Something is very fishy about this community’s conversion; after all, we were the people that started the drive that brought Chesapeake Utilities focus to bring natural gas to Worcester County.

Our petition signing and getting local media to support our petition was the driving force in getting Chesapeake to bring the pipeline down. Since that has been done, other conversions have taken place in the Berlin area and now it is rumored that Glen Riddle will soon start converting. What is going on? Recently, there was pipe installation along Route 589 heading towards the North Gate, but nothing has been said or reported in local media.

Ocean Pines has quite a bit of pipeline already lain in that community. It was installed by Eastern Shore Gas (ESG) with a contract for 20 years that expired in May 2013. Chesapeake Utilities that then changed the name to Sandpiper Gas purchased ESG. Because of these changes and the end of the pipeline contract, they were given a six-month extension of the contract.

Then both parties were to negotiate a new contract. Has anyone heard anything about what transpired? The BofD has not said a word and the local media obviously does not seem to think this is an important topic. Well it is a very important topic, as natural gas will save the residents of Ocean Pines who use propane a ton of money. Natural gas customers in Salisbury pay half the amount Ocean Pines propane users pay, for the same amount of usage.

What is going on? Why has Ocean Pines been placed on the back burner of conversions? What was the result of the negotiation for Sandpiper to utilize the OP gas lines? Can other propane suppliers utilize the OP pipeline at a cheaper price? Who is standing up for Ocean Pines propane users in this very important economic issue? Why isn’t there any news about this?

Budd Shea

Ocean Pines

 

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