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Dec 20, 2015 10:21 AM

Legal scholar: Northern Pass challenge faces stiff challenge

The Associated Press

CONCORD — A legal scholar says a lawsuit claiming a utility company doesn't have the right to bury a contentious power line under a New Hampshire highway faces long odds.

Hartford, Connecticut-based Eversource wants to run the 192-mile Northern Pass transmission line from Pittsburg to Deerfield, carrying Canadian hydropower to southern New England markets.

The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests opposes the project. It owns land along the route and is suing Eversource, saying it doesn't have permission to run lines under the stretch of Route 3 that goes through society land.

Marcus Hurn has practiced property law for 35 years. He says the society has a very difficult problem: overcoming decades-old state law that says utilities can put wires or pipelines in highway and railroad rights of way.

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