BOSTON - After dropping one bidder in favor of another to stay on schedule with a major hydropower procurement, it appears a separate procurement, for offshore wind energy, may be delayed.

A Baker administraton official, agreeing to speak on background only, told the News Service Wednesday there's a possibility of a delay in the selection of a bid or bids as part of the 83C offshore wind procurement process.

The evaluation team that worked on a hydropower procurement is also tasked with the offshore procurement, according to the official, who described the hydropower procurement as "prolonged" and said winter storms caused meeting cancellations.

The state and its electric utilities last week dropped the Northern Pass project, which encountered permitting troubles in New Hampshire, in favor of finalizing a long-term hydropower contract with the 140-mile New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC) transmission project in Maine. The decision was aimed at ensuring that a major contract called for under the 2016 law stays on track for an April 25 submission, the Department of Energy Resources said.

The offshore wind procurement has long been operating with an expected April 23 selection date.

Commonwealth magazine on Tuesday quoted Matthew Beaton, the secretary of energy and environmental affairs, saying "there could be a delay. We don’t know what a delay will look like."

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