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Commission 2-1 for wind farm

The Mineral County Commission moved Tuesday to go on record in support of the proposed Pinnacle Wind Farm. The support, however, is not unanimous. After going into executive session to discuss "legal matters," which they later said related to the proposed contract in which WindForce will agree to commit itself to a "floor" for tax revenue to be generated by the project, two of the commissioners said they felt it was time for the county to commit to a position.

KEYSER - The Mineral County Commission moved Tuesday to go on record in support of the proposed Pinnacle Wind Farm.

The support, however, is not unanimous.

After going into executive session to discuss "legal matters," which they later said related to the proposed contract in which WindForce will agree to commit itself to a "floor" for tax revenue to be generated by the project, two of the commissioners said they felt it was time for the county to commit to a position.

"I've been listening to all of this since 2002, and I'd like to move that we write a letter of support to the Public Service Commission supporting this project," Commissioner Cindy Pyles said.

Commissioner Janice LaRue, who has seemed very skeptical and has questioned many aspects of the project over the past several months, seconded the motion.

Commission President Wayne Spiggle, however, asked his fellow officials to postpone any decision until after the PSC holds the evidentiary hearing scheduled for Monday, Oct. 26 in Charleston.

"I believe the evidentiary hearings will bring out significant information," he said, implying that he apparently questions the impact the wind turbines might have on the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

KEYSER - The Mineral County Commission moved Tuesday to go on record in support of the proposed Pinnacle Wind Farm.

The support, however, is not unanimous.

After going into executive session to discuss "legal matters," which they later said related to the proposed contract in which WindForce will agree to commit itself to a "floor" for tax revenue to be generated by the project, two of the commissioners said they felt it was time for the county to commit to a position.

"I've been listening to all of this since 2002, and I'd like to move that we write a letter of support to the Public Service Commission supporting this project," Commissioner Cindy Pyles said.

Commissioner Janice LaRue, who has seemed very skeptical and has questioned many aspects of the project over the past several months, seconded the motion.

Commission President Wayne Spiggle, however, asked his fellow officials to postpone any decision until after the PSC holds the evidentiary hearing scheduled for Monday, Oct. 26 in Charleston.

"I believe the evidentiary hearings will bring out significant information," he said, implying that he apparently questions the impact the wind turbines might have on the migratory path of eagles and other birds.

Spiggle said that U.S. WindForce representatives had initially said the wind turbines would have "little impact on the area's migratory flyway," and he was "reassured about it" until the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service "wrote a letter that was very strong ... and changed my thinking."

"That's just one example of additional information that I think will come out" in the Oct. 26 hearing, he said.

LaRue, however, said she did not want to delay the decision any longer.
"First we agreed to wait until after the public hearings, and now you're asking us to do this," she said.

"I've read all there is to read about this. We've studied and studied and studied it.

"No matter what we do, we're not going to make everybody happy. I don't know what the answer is, but I do know that we need jobs and we need the taxes," she said.

To a point, Spiggle agreed.

"I'm very confident about joining my fellow commissioners in saying we would support any business that brings tax dollars into the community, and that brings jobs, no matter how temporary they might be," he said.

Other issues, however, need to be taken into consideration, he added.

"I'm not sanguine about the historical transformation of the skyline and what that might represent to the county. Some think it might enhance the skyline and some do not.

"I just feel it is premature for the county commission to write a blanket letter of support for this," he said.

Pyles reminded the officials that there was a motion on the floor, and they voted, with Spiggle announcing the proposal passed "by majority vote."
"But what is your vote?" Pyles asked.

"It's not unanimous," Spiggle replied.


Source: http://www.newstribune.info...

OCT 14 2009
http://www.windaction.org/posts/22658-commission-2-1-for-wind-farm
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