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Some skeptical of New Hartford windmill talks

NEW HARTFORD – Frederick Scatko has mixed feelings about the possibility of a 60- to 80-foot-tall wind turbine being built near his Higby Road home.

“If I could get some power from it, I’d gladly have it there,” Scatko said.

And if he couldn’t?

“Then it’d be another story,” he said.

The New Hartford Central School District is contacting Vestas, a Danish company that operates in Madison County, to ask the company to give a presentation about wind turbines. Some officials hope a turbine, placed on district property between Hughes Elementary and Ralph Perry Junior High schools, could provide an alternative energy source.

Superintendent Daniel Gilligan said the school is exploring different ways to cut utility costs, and the study is in its earliest stages. The cost savings the wind turbines would provide is unknown, he said.

“We’re just like any other school,” Gilligan said. “We’re trying to keep an open mind on how to save on energy.”

An 85-kilowatt unit would have three blades measuring 15 meters from tip to tip. Cost, efficiency and maintenance details of the turbines are unknown, and a presentation date has not been set, Gilligan said.

Board member Kevin Copeland has said a turbine could provide power for the elementary and middle schools.

Jerry Orsaeo, owner of Weichert Realtors Campion-Weeks, said he’s pleased the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
“If I could get some power from it, I’d gladly have it there,” Scatko said.

And if he couldn’t?

“Then it’d be another story,” he said.

The New Hartford Central School District is contacting Vestas, a Danish company that operates in Madison County, to ask the company to give a presentation about wind turbines. Some officials hope a turbine, placed on district property between Hughes Elementary and Ralph Perry Junior High schools, could provide an alternative energy source.

Superintendent Daniel Gilligan said the school is exploring different ways to cut utility costs, and the study is in its earliest stages. The cost savings the wind turbines would provide is unknown, he said.

“We’re just like any other school,” Gilligan said. “We’re trying to keep an open mind on how to save on energy.”

An 85-kilowatt unit would have three blades measuring 15 meters from tip to tip. Cost, efficiency and maintenance details of the turbines are unknown, and a presentation date has not been set, Gilligan said.

Board member Kevin Copeland has said a turbine could provide power for the elementary and middle schools.

Jerry Orsaeo, owner of Weichert Realtors Campion-Weeks, said he’s pleased the school is trying to get energy from wind, but wouldn’t want a tower in his back yard.

“I think it would be a detrimental effect if it was close to any housing,” Orsaeo said. “It could affect the marketability if it was right on top of a home, absolutely. People don’t like those things towering over their homes.”

Breezy rural towns in Herkimer County have been split about whether to develop windmills. Sites near Waterville and Canastota have been home to the turbines for several years.

Using wind as power is a good way to cut utility costs if the plan is feasible, New Hartford Town Supervisor Earle Reed said.

“I don’t know all the particulars about this, but it’s interesting how some communities have wanted them and some haven’t.”

Higby Road resident Qinyang Sun might fall into that latter group.
“The important thing is for kids to get a good education,” Sun said. “I don’t think it’s necessary to build this.”

Sun said she’s unsure if the purchase would be the best use of tax money, expressed concern about the noise the structure would produce.

Reed said he has similar worries.

“I’ve heard they can be quite noisy,” he said.

The Rev. Wanda Weidman, pastor of the Moravian Church of the Good Shepherd, said the windmill proposal is interesting, but she wants more details. The church neighbors Hughes Elementary.

“I think it’s something we’d have to pay attention to,” Weidman said. “We’re not for it or against it until we have more information.”

Source: http://www.uticaod.com/apps...

FEB 9 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/1249-some-skeptical-of-new-hartford-windmill-talks
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