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County commissioners set March 29 for wind farm hearing -Planning Commission recommended denial of Kittitas Valley Wind Power Project

Kittitas County commissioners on Tuesday set March 29 as the date to conduct their own public hearings on the Kittitas Valley Wind Power Project, a wind farm proposed for 12 miles northwest of Ellensburg.

The commissioners’ hearing will be at 6 p.m. at the Kittitas County Fairgrounds, likely in the Home Arts Building. As in the past, provisions will be made to continue the initial hearing to following evenings if business is not concluded.

In setting the date, commissioners said they want the project applicant, Horizon Wind Energy, to present its full information at the beginning of the session in a reasonable amount of time that leaves time for ample public testimony later in the evening.

The commissioners have received from the county Planning Commission a recommendation to deny permits to the project planned by the Houston-based wind-power development company.

County commissioners and the Planning Commission conducted joint hearings Jan. 10-12, and the Planning Commission later met and recommended rejection of the wind farm that could have 64 turbines on about 6,000 acres on ridges on both sides of U.S. Highway 97.

Commissioner Perry Huston said Tuesday he will be “incredibly disappointed” if Horizon presents new information at the end of the hearing process. He said if that happens he will call for additional hearings to allow the public to respond to the new information.

He also said there... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
The commissioners’ hearing will be at 6 p.m. at the Kittitas County Fairgrounds, likely in the Home Arts Building. As in the past, provisions will be made to continue the initial hearing to following evenings if business is not concluded.

In setting the date, commissioners said they want the project applicant, Horizon Wind Energy, to present its full information at the beginning of the session in a reasonable amount of time that leaves time for ample public testimony later in the evening.

The commissioners have received from the county Planning Commission a recommendation to deny permits to the project planned by the Houston-based wind-power development company.

County commissioners and the Planning Commission conducted joint hearings Jan. 10-12, and the Planning Commission later met and recommended rejection of the wind farm that could have 64 turbines on about 6,000 acres on ridges on both sides of U.S. Highway 97.

Commissioner Perry Huston said Tuesday he will be “incredibly disappointed” if Horizon presents new information at the end of the hearing process. He said if that happens he will call for additional hearings to allow the public to respond to the new information.

He also said there should be reasonable limits placed on Horizon’s response to the Planning Commission’s denial in order to allow the public to comment on Horizon’s presentation.

Lawyer Jeff Slothower, speaking for himself and wind farm opponent and Kittitas Valley property owner Steve Lathrop, said the initial January hearing had Horizon speakers presenting information late into the evening, causing many residents to leave before they had a chance to speak.

He said some traveled from the West Side to make their comments at the first hearing and couldn’t return on the following nights.

Commission Chairman David Bowen said it was his intention to make ample accommodation for the public’s comments. He noted that the applicant can always make an effort to be available to speak, but the public can’t always attend the hearings.

Source: http://www.kvnews.com/artic...

FEB 22 2006
http://www.windaction.org/posts/1427-county-commissioners-set-march-29-for-wind-farm-hearing-planning-commission-recommended-denial-of-kittitas-valley-wind-power-project
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