ATLANTIC CITY — Rejected for the second time on its bid to build a windmill project off Atlantic City’s shore, Fishermen’s Energy said it is headed to court.
Fishermen’s Energy, based in Cape May, says it will ask a state appellate court to reconsider its project, which it claims the Board of Public Utilities wrongly rejected based on incorrect, inflated cost calculations.
The state Board of Public Utilities’ most recent denial came in a vote Wednesday.
Fishermen’s Energy claims the BPU vastly overestimated the price of the electricity the windmills would produce.
“The Board clearly did not see the value in waiting for the Department of Energy to announce its pending decision of awardees for its Phase II Grants for Demonstration Offshore Wind Projects, even though lack of certainty of federal funding, especially the DOE grant, was BPU’s stated reason for denial,” said Rhonda Jackson, director of communication at Fishermen’s Energy.
The board ruled that a Chinese company that would own 70 percent of the project did not demonstrate financial integrity, and submitted key financial information in Mandarin Chinese, without a translation.
The board said Xiangtan Electric Manufacturing Group did not use American accounting standards in asserting its financial strength, and has not shown it can get necessary federal subsidies.
“We are grateful New Jersey has an independent judiciary and look forward to having the merits of our application finally heard in the Appellate Division. We expect to be vindicated by the courts and to build the first offshore windfarm off of New Jersey, one that could still be the first in the United States,” said Paul Gallagher, chief operating officer of Fishermen’s Energy.
Jackson said no documents have yet been filed in court but the company intends to do so before mid-May.
Staff writer Anjalee Khemlani contributed to this report.