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Township officials from around Michigan and a group of about 300 citizens gathered Tuesday in Bay County at a forum where they heard from a speaker critical of wind energy.
During public comment before the vote, Friends of the Huron Mountains (FOHM) president Burt Mason questioned the township board’s decision to allow to L’Anse village residents on the township planning board. ...Mason also said the vote to lower the minimum blade clearance is illegal because the resolution wasn’t part of the public hearing held on Sept. 27.
The county drafted updates that included definitions about turbines, exact zoning districts, setbacks, noise levels, potential abandonment of the turbine, and a variety of other zoning issues relating to installation of the turbines. ..."I mean, to leave it the way it was was pretty general, and they could probably be able to come in and do anything they wanted. So this does offer some restrictions.”
After months or work on a proposed ordinances to regulate wind turbines in Sherwood Township, the Planning Commission, Wednesday night, will hold another special public hearing.
Mike Dault said he’s generally in favor of green energy, but after doing some research about projects like the Summit Lake Wind Project, he finds most communities have regretted their construction. “How much have you researched it?” he asked the commission. “Don’t believe the salesman.”
"These are nearly 500 foot tall towers, that's taller than the statue of liberty they are very large," says Rick Sible, a resident against the wind farm project. Many residents say they have health concerns when it comes to the turbines, some worried about the shadow flickers they would make, and the noise coming from them.
Consumers says that from May 2017 to May 2018 it received 398 interconnection requests for 1,800 MW of generation, with projects ranging from .15 MW to 20 MW. The average cost of these projects is $98.40 per megawatt-hour over a 20-year contract, which is “substantially higher” than the company’s contracts for three new wind projects at about $45 per MWh.
L’ANSE — Amid repeated outbursts from the assembled public, the L’Anse Township Board appointed three new members to the Planning Commission: JoAnn Pennock, Craig Kent and Joan Bugni.
Ken Walker proposed the following phrase be added to page 104: “With the current shift in attitude, the county will not allow any new wind development.” The “shift in attitude” refers to the May 2017 vote, where voters in county-zoned municipalities turned down two new wind energy developments by a 2 to 1 margin.
Over several months, there has been a plethora of recalls filed against the three township officials that were denied by the Tuscola County Election Commission because of lack of clarity or sufficiency against Juniata Township officials. The wording on the last recall was approved and that is the one that is moving on to be listed on the November ballot.
The proposed 10,000-acre Broadlands Wind Farm has been met with resistance from residents who believe the county’s WECS ordinance does not go far enough to protect neighboring residents. The residents say the property line set backs are not enough to protect their homes from shadow flicker, noise, ice throw, and a run away turbine.
Bloomfield Township resident Robert Gaffke was one of four members of the public who attended the 16-minute meeting. He urged the board to call Robert Rand of Rand Acoustics, LLC regarding sound testing to address three complaints about wind turbine noise.
This week, the board of commissioners reviewed a third-party proposal to do sound testing on the three complainants’ property. Albeit an expensive endeavor, it’s the right move to satisfy everyone — the complainants, county officials, wind developers and the public.
A proposed wind farm project at the border of Muskegon and Kent counties has local residents concerned about their quality of life and safety if the project is approved by Casnovia Township officials.
For now, the Muskegon County project is on hold while the township planning commission decides whether the project's details are in compliance with zoning rules.
“Renewable Energy Systems (RES) has been requesting changes to our zoning ordinance since September 2017,” Andrews wrote in a statement. “The vote to terminate me from my position reflects the company’s strategy to manipulate local politics to get what they want.”
To view the entire Friends of the Huron Mountains press release click here or on the document icon on this page.
After hearing the complaints, the planning commission voted unanimously to create a committee to look at the issue of wind turbines in the township. The committee will consist of nine members: three commission members, three residents who are for the wind turbines and three who are against them.