Library filed under Zoning/Planning from New York
The Catlin Town Board unanimously passed tight regulations intended to be a de facto ban on commercial wind turbines Thursday, putting a large-scale wind project by Florida-based NextEra Energy in doubt
A public hearing is scheduled next month on a proposed law intended to give second thoughts to anyone who wants to build a wind turbine farm to generate energy in the Town of Catlin.
The town has no regulations governing “residential” wind turbines, town planner Drew Reilly said. This means that right now, such turbines are prohibited – but the board held the hearing to discuss proposed regulations for them.
After a contentious public hearing last week, the Town Board voted Tuesday to adopt a local law establishing regulations for the development of wind turbines in the town.
Town Supervisor Fran Enjem said he expects the town board will discuss the ramifications of the decision in June. He also said he wants to strengthen the provisions in the community host agreement between the town and the developer. Enjem pointed out that he never signed that agreement.
Following a public hearing attended by 25 people, the Dix town board chose to not take action on the proposed wind farm regulations Monday, April 27. Residents from both inside and outside the town of Dix voiced their concerns, which ranged from health and wildlife impacts to property values and setbacks.
A set of regulations for residential wind power facilities in the Town of Pendleton won the approval of the Niagara County Planning Board Monday, with the recommendation that the town adopt a noise ordinance to go along with it.
It calls for wind companies to post bonds to cover any decrease in residents’ property values from having turbines near their land. It would also make the companies liable for medical bills caused by health impacts such as noise exposure and shadow flicker, a strobe-like effect created by spinning turbine blades said to cause seizures and other issues.
The town's planning and zoning board tabled a decision on whether to grant the greenhouse a zoning variance Tuesday night. The turbine's proposed height is greater than the 60 foot tower limit in Clarence.
“If this project goes forward, all that will be accomplished is us giving millions of tax dollars to a multi-million dollar company to screw up our town ... A project of this scope and magnitude has no place in Yates, or anywhere else for that matter. What we need is sound, systematic commercial and residential growth, not wind farms.”
The board asked the Planniong Board to draw up an ordinance after the board was asked to consider whether to allow Mapleton Road resident Thomas Izard to erect a 100-foot tower with a wind turbine on top.
This sudden political wind shift has its roots in local citizen opposition based on concerns about noise, visual blight and environmental issues. It also springs from fears the state could usurp town authority ...But at the bottom of it all is a sense of unease over any project that seems, well, just way too big, too complicated or too difficult to control.
Catlin officials had been close to enacting new regulations limiting where the turbines - which would be 430 feet tall - could be located. However, the town is now moving toward an outright ban instead, said Catlin Town Supervisor Laverne Phelps.
Joseph Calderone, who is mounting a write-in campaign for town supervisor, said, “The wind turbine law doesn’t meet the smell test economically, scientifically, politically and, most importantly, personally. Of the two town halls (meetings) I have attended, not one person has walked up to the microphone and extolled the virtues of wind, the law or the town’s plans for the community.”
Allegany residents were assured by the Allegany Town Board at Tuesday’s meeting that the board is reviewing a recommendation to rescind the wind energy overlay district in the Chipmonk Road area.
The Ulster County Planning Department has recommended the town update its zoning before granting permission to actor Judd Hirsch to build a 176-foot-high wind turbine on his Yeagerville Road property. ...Because Denning’s zoning law does not mention wind turbines, they could be used either in all or none of the town.
Councilor Nancy Montgomery said she senses “the region is wanting to embrace this clean energy. But we have to make sure we can deal with all the challenges we’re going to have to face.” The town must devise a policy and “this is a good way to do it, so we do it right,” she said.
Re-elected Tuesday as Richfield Town Supervisor, Fran Enjem said Friday that he has serious reservations with an agreement offered by the developers of a planned wind farm project, saying it fails to adequately protect his community. Enjem’s resistance to the host agreement is one of two last remaining obstacles facing the Monticello Hills wind farm.
“BP has had our town twisting in the winds of uncertainty since 2006. Please try to provide us with some relief by insisting that an applicant presuming to be moving forward under Article X not be permitted to circle over a town indefinitely,” town officials said in their letter Friday. BP Wind Energy has become increasingly uncommunicative.
"Wind turbines are an allowable use under the new zoning" code adopted in 2011, Dee observed in opening the hearing. However, after adoption of the code, "there were a lot of questions raised." He said the Town Board intends to revisit the issue and update the zoning law as needed, a view echoed by Town Board Member John Van Tassel, liaison to the ZBA.