Dear Editor,

In response to the paid opinion by Chantae Lessard, director Social Performance and Engagement, Aquila Resources, regarding her letter “Township should follow rules, not personal feelings,” I ponder whether Lessard is just ignorant of the issues or is she being misled by the people at Aquila who tell her what to write/say?

Webster’s defines “ignorant” as “lacking knowledge, information, or awareness about something in particular.” Lessard did not present all the facts. Those facts include that a large percentage (hundreds of acres — plus) of a potential mine site is made up of land owned by the taxpayers of the State of Michigan. Land that was leased to Aquila for only $3 per acre. Repeat: $3. There is a signed lease that is a valid and enforceable contract that was signed by the president and CEO of Aquila. This contract states under Section 7. Laws, Rules, and Regulations: a. “Any operations under this lease shall be subject to all applicable federal, local and State laws, rules, and ordinances now or hereafter in force. This lease is not in itself an authorization to explore or mine. In addition to compliance with the provisions of this lease, and particularly Sections I and J thereof, Lessee must obtain all permits which may be or are required under federal, local and State law or any rules or ordinances adopted there under.”

Aquila signed a contract assuring the State of Michigan and Lake Township that they would adhere to all State, local and federal laws. But, now the paid spokesperson for Aquila is trying to say what? That Aquila is a company that refuses to adhere to provisions in their contracts? Aquila is a company that refuses to follow laws they agreed to follow? Lessard’s message should scare everyone in our community and should put any agreement with this company into the category: Fool me once shame on you; fool me twice shame of me — for trusting you.

 

Tom Boerner

Lake Township land owner