Towns receive PERC payments

The four Mount Desert Island towns and Trenton have received a total of $92,826 from the debt service reserve fund that was created in 1998 to secure a loan for the Penobscot Energy Recovery Company (PERC) facility in Orrington.

Currently, 187 Maine municipalities send their solid waste to PERC, where it is burned to generate electricity.

PERC is scheduled to make its last loan payment in December, so the reserve fund is no longer needed to secure the loan.

The Municipal Review Committee (MRC), which has partnered with PERC in the operation of the plant, has distributed $1.33 million to the MRC’s 86 original members known as “equity charter municipalities.”

The amount that each municipality has received was based on its share of the tonnage of solid waste delivered to PERC between July 1998 and September 2017.

Bar Harbor received $40,604; Mount Desert, $15,269; Southwest Harbor, $18,440; Tremont, $8,563; and Trenton, $9,950.

PERC’s power purchase agreement with the MRC-member municipalities expires in March. Instead of re-signing with PERC, more than 100 of the MRC cities and towns have decided to partner with Fiberight LLC, which is building a facility in Hampden that will turn solid waste into biofuel.

More money to share

The MRC’s equity charter municipalities have an opportunity to share an additional $1.5 million, which PERC will pay to buy back all of the ownership interests in PERC that are held by the 86 municipalities. Those municipalities, including the four MDI towns and Trenton, have until Dec. 15 to decide whether to sell their interests in PERC.



Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]
Dick Broom

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