Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. We must all do more to help stop this western corporate arrogance that puts the future generations lives in despair. @BruceKGagnon

Saturday, February 05, 2022

Spaceports in Maine?


LD 1923, An Act To Establish the Maine Space Corporation

By Hillary Lister & Bruce Gagnon

This new Public Private Partnership would manage Federal government contracts, issue bonds, receive tax breaks, and distribute funds for acquiring land and property for a Maine Space Complex, including developing staging and launch sites for sending satellites and launch vehicles into polar orbit from Brunswick, Limestone, and near Jonesport.

LD 1923 is the result of work by the Maine Space Grant Consortium, a NASA funded organization that promotes aerospace industry interests.

The NASA-backed Consortium has been working to promote the bill in partnership with rocket developer bluShift Aerospace, the University of Maine System, the Loring Development Authority, which manages the former Air Force Base in Limestone, and the Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority, which manages the former Air Force Base in Brunswick. The former bases have the advantage of having FAA certified airports, making them usable for satellite and rocket launches.

During the February 1 public hearing in Augusta testimony in support of LD 1923 specifically highlighted weaponized uses of the spaceports by Karl Hoose of VALT.

VALT Enterprizes was recently awarded a $6.4 million contract from the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) due to VALT’s capacity to address a wide range of hypersonic mission tests. Hypersonics remain a top priority of the Department of Defense (DoD) with a budget of $3.8 billion in FY2022, and a total $29.3 billion investment by 2025.

VALT's DoD contract includes conducting multiple series of hypersonic flight tests to verify performance and capabilities.

Maine’s location and coastline make an ideal launch site location to reach polar orbits, which would make it the only launch location with direct polar orbital access on the east coast.

The sponsor of the bill, Rep Daughtry of Brunswick, has stated that, "The private sector can’t do this without support from public authorities. It will require coordination between federal, state, regional, local and private entities." This bill will set the process in motion for certain entities in the private sector, universities, and non-profit organizations to receive major financial support support through new federal and state tax-payer funded subsidies.

Perhaps to some this sounds like a benign effort to bring jobs and build Maine's economy. But we know that similar spaceport projects (see below) have belied the private sector promises and eventually became used for military operations. Not to mention the environmental impacts from fuels leaking into the local water supply and toxic rocket exhausts. This proposal requires citizen action.

The Innovation, Development, Economic Advancement, and Business (IDEA) Committee of the Maine Legislature will discuss and potentially vote on this bill at their Work Session on Tuesday, February 8, 2022, starting 9:30 AM. You can contact members of the committee with concerns about LD 1923 before Tuesday's work session.

The work session will stream live at:

IDEA Committee Members

Senator Chip Curry - D
Committee Chair
13 Parkside Lane Belfast, ME 04915

Representative Tiffany Roberts - D
Committee Chair (cosponsor of LD 1923)
35 Buttonwood Road South Berwick, ME 03908

Senator Scott Cyrway - R
(cosponsor of LD 1923)
463 Benton Road Albion, ME 04910

Senator Joseph Rafferty - D
49 Middle Road Kennebunk, ME 04043

Representative John Andrews - R
P.O. Box 118 Paris, ME 04281

Representative Susan Austin - R
136 Yarmouth Road Gray, ME 04039

Representative Sue Bernard - R
70 Grimes Road Caribou, ME 04736

Representative Amanda Collamore - R
173 Library Street Pittsfield, ME 04967

Representative Jack Ducharme R
34 Heald Street Madison, ME 04950

Representative Valli Geiger - D
1 Green Way Rockland, ME 04841

Representative Tavis Hasenfus - D
50 Nobis Point Readfield, ME 04355

Representative Raegan LaRochelle - D
102 Hemlock Terrace Augusta, ME 04330

Representative Sarah Pebworth - D
P.O. Box 347 Blue Hill, ME 04614 


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