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Que Township adopts turbine regs

Supervisors put more than a year of work and discussion behind them by agreeing to a proposed wind turbine ordinance during Monday's meeting. The proposal goes beyond county code by imposing noise limits and extending the distance a turbine must be placed from property lines. Quemahoning will require developers to keep the nearest unit a minimum of four times the height of the turbine from the property line of a non-participating landowner. That equates to a little over 1,600 feet for a standard 2.1-megawatt turbine.

Quemahoning Township - Supervisors put more than a year of work and discussion behind them by agreeing to a proposed wind turbine ordinance during Monday's meeting.

The proposal goes beyond county code by imposing noise limits and extending the distance a turbine must be placed from property lines.

Quemahoning will require developers to keep the nearest unit a minimum of four times the height of the turbine from the property line of a non-participating landowner. That equates to a little over 1,600 feet for a standard 2.1-megawatt turbine. By comparison, Shade Township requires a setback of three times the hub height from the nearest property line of a non-participating landowner.

The real debate between residents and supervisors came over setback regulations. The county's ordinance requires turbines to be placed approximately 2,000 feet from an occupied structure, a distance equal to five ties the hub height of the turbine. Resident John Toth wanted the supervisors to set the same distance requirement for neighboring property lines.

Otherwise, he said, residents building homes or developments in the future might find themselves signing indemnity waivers because the new structures... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Quemahoning Township - Supervisors put more than a year of work and discussion behind them by agreeing to a proposed wind turbine ordinance during Monday's meeting.

The proposal goes beyond county code by imposing noise limits and extending the distance a turbine must be placed from property lines.

Quemahoning will require developers to keep the nearest unit a minimum of four times the height of the turbine from the property line of a non-participating landowner. That equates to a little over 1,600 feet for a standard 2.1-megawatt turbine. By comparison, Shade Township requires a setback of three times the hub height from the nearest property line of a non-participating landowner.

The real debate between residents and supervisors came over setback regulations. The county's ordinance requires turbines to be placed approximately 2,000 feet from an occupied structure, a distance equal to five ties the hub height of the turbine. Resident John Toth wanted the supervisors to set the same distance requirement for neighboring property lines.

Otherwise, he said, residents building homes or developments in the future might find themselves signing indemnity waivers because the new structures fall within the county's hub height radius of an existing turbine.

"All those people are going to lose the use of their property and that's wrong," Toth said.

Resident Mike Kern, of Koontz Road, said that the county code "didn't plan for future development. I think that was kind of bad foresight."

Supervisor Mark Corden was not comfortable with extending the distance to a property line to five times the hub height.

"I think that Shade's comfortable with three," he said.

The goal was to protect residents without effectively outlawing the construction, he said.

In the end, Supervisor Jesse Shroyer motioned to approve four times the hub height as the final property line distance.

"Split the difference. That should help a little bit," he said.

Corden was the sole "no" vote on the distance, but approved all the other aspects of the ordinance. That included limiting turbine noise to 45 decibels as measured from the property line of the nearest non-participating landowner.

Supervisors will either approve the ordinance during the next monthly meeting or advertise a special meeting to do so.

Supervisor Mark Rininger said he heard that at least one landowner had recently been approached for development.

"We want to get this done as soon as possible," he said.


Source: http://www.dailyamerican.co...

FEB 9 2009
http://www.windaction.org/posts/19002-que-township-adopts-turbine-regs
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