Maine Public Broadcasting and the Bangor Daily News have quite a story from the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting on how big wind and Maine government interact. From the Bangor Daily News story:
While he was Maine's chief utilities regulator, Kurt Adams accepted an ownership interest in a leading wind energy company.
One month later, in May 2008, he went to work for that company, First Wind, as a senior vice president.
It's not clear how much the ownership interest — described as 1.2 million units of equity — that Adams received while still at the commission is worth, since First Wind has not put a value on the equity units in its Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company said the units of equity are not the same as stock options.
A recent First Wind filing with the federal SEC for 2009 shows Adams' $1.3 million compensation included $315,000 in salary, $658,000 in stock awards, $29,000 of "other" compensation and $315,000 in "nonequity incentives."...
Adams said that at the time they were awarded to him, the equity units — which he called "stock" in an interview with the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting — had "no value at all" and therefore shouldn't fall under any state laws that bar improper gifts to public officials.
As I've reported here and here, First Wind has some serious ties to the Obama administration through its lobbyists and investors. If this were all being done by an oil company there'd probably be a much bigger uproar, but because it's wind, it has an image as "clean" energy.