Library from Illinois

Wind turbine forum draws big crowd

A large group with plenty of opinions on both sides of Vermilion County's wind turbine issue turned out Monday night for a public forum. The crowd of both onlookers and speakers filled the expanse of bleachers along the southern wall of the gymnasium at Potomac Grade School. More than 40 speakers - 37 from Vermilion County - signed up to step to the podium.
16 Apr 2013

A bad night for wind company; Panel points to noise, flicker issues

In a 4-1 vote, with member Bruce Forester dissenting, the board found that Mainstream's petition didn't sufficiently protect neighbors from shadow flicker. And members unanimously ruled that the proposed setbacks weren't enough to mitigate the problem. ...The board also decided to back recommendations from the state Department of Natural Resources to create a 1-mile buffer around the state's Foley Sand Prairie Natural Preserve and a half-mile buffer around other natural areas.
12 Apr 2013

Officials to lead turbine forum

Currently, the county's wind ordinance calls for a setback of 1,200 feet from the primary structure on a property. Nesbitt, at the February committee meeting, asked for a moratorium on the ordinance and suggested the setback be increased to 1,320 feet from any property line and 2,600 feet from any structure.
7 Apr 2013

County sued over wind turbine

A turbine near their house, Schwartzbach said, was a constant bother. "It produces loud humming sounds. At night it's ubearable. We turn on the TV to drown it out, so we can fall asleep. We don't hear the crickets at night or birds in the morning."
3 Apr 2013

Lee County keeps rubber stamp in storage

Lee County does not plan to use the rubber stamp this time. Historically, wind energy companies have driven the county's process in reviewing proposed wind farms. ...Since then, local opposition to wind farms has increased. Neighbors complain about noise, vibrations and shadow flicker from turbines. And they say wind farms have reduced the value of their properties.
30 Mar 2013

Wind farm complaints prompt review of rules

Michael Creech had planned to retire at the family homestead, a two-story farmhouse among square miles of farmland east of Hope in western Vermilion County. But he said he's changed his mind ...mostly because of the noise. There are three different noises, a whooshing sound from the blades turning, a droning noise that he compares to a jet engine, and noise from the motors when the turbines change position.
10 Mar 2013

Lee County's bizarre journey to openness

For months, the county bizarrely fought against the public's right to have access to that information. All 28 Lee County Board members stayed publicly quiet as this happened. The transcripts were done by a court reporter hired by Mainstream Renewable Power ...The proposed wind farm is controversial. Many neighboring residents don't want it, fearing their property values will decline, among other concerns. They want all the information they can about the project.
19 Feb 2013

Stick to education

From numbers acquired from this FOIA request, it was determined there is an accumulated five-year loss of more than $130,000. At the end of 10 years, when the last of the turbine's loan payments are scheduled to be made, the district can be projected to have a deficit of more than $260,000 if the expenses or repairs don't go up. In the most recent year alone, the annual insurance and maintenance expenses have risen more than $2,000.
8 Jan 2013

Turbines may hurt animals

Under questioning from attorney Rick Porter, who is representing residents fighting the wind farm, Shank confirmed he was aware that Mainstream was planning to take no measures to mitigate the harm to the ornate box turtle and the plains hognose snake.
3 Jan 2013

Woman: ‘We were handcuffed'

Margina Schwartzbach says there was a reason she never objected beforehand to a planned wind turbine next to her home: No one told her about it. The West Brooklyn woman says she found out about it when the project started - more than a year after the county approved it.
31 Dec 2012
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