Articles filed under Zoning/Planning from Pennsylvania
As has been the case for more than six months, the issue involving wind turbines again dominated the Butler Township supervisors meeting Tuesday evening. The township municipal building was again filled to standing-room only with township residents and others who oppose the proposed project planned by Broad Mountain Development Co. LLC, a Rich family company. Broad Mountain has a proposed locating 27 wind turbines in the Fountain Springs area, a plan strongly opposed by local residents.
Clearfield County Planning Commission listened to a pair of concerned citizens at its meeting last night who shared information about a proposed wind energy project. Brady Township resident Gary Swope shared information about the 43-turbine project projected for Brady, Bloom and Penn townships by Iberdrola Renewables. Swope reported the project area would contain industrial-sized wind turbines measuring 300 feet across its blades and 400 feet from the ground to its highest point.
If Monaca resident Chuck Thomas had been able to get his windmill up and running over the weekend, he would have been able to take advantage of Monday's stiff breezes. ..."One problem is that there is no provision for small wind turbines in his zone," Leone said Monday. "He has to get a variance for that, and his hearing isn't scheduled until Oct. 19."
For much of this year, the West Penn Township Board of Supervisors has been considering an ordinance regulating the use of wind turbines. The ordinance has been reviewed by the planning commission and revised after being under public scrutiny. When it came time for the supervisors to pull the trigger and vote on the proposed regulations, an oversight by the township's solicitor has the board delaying that vote again, at least for another month.
The Brady Township Supervisors held a workshop conference call in relation to developing a wind turbine ordinance. The conversation was with Thomas Tuffey, the director of PennFuture's Center for Energy, Enterprise and the Environment covered many areas of interest for the supervisors, who are currently writing an ordinance that will place regulations on the wind turbines currently being proposed by Iberdrola, U.S.A. in the township.
The Gilberton company that wants to build windmills in Butler Township has asked Schuylkill County Court to reinstate its zoning permit for the project. Broad Mountain Development Co. LLC wants the court to allow it to construct 27 wind turbines near Fountain Springs and alleges the township zoning hearing board incorrectly revoked the permit on July 29. Serious harm would result if the court does not reverse the board's decision, according to the appeal filed Tuesday.
A little more than a year since North Strabane first received a request from a resident to install a wind turbine on his property, a draft of a zoning ordinance amendment regarding small non-commercial wind energy conversion systems soon may be voted on by the board of supervisors.
One red balloon will be hoisted high above the Buck Mountain ridge overlooking Black Creek Township this month. The balloon is part of a test to better visualize what a proposed wind turbine farm will look like. ...Penn Wind LLC, Sunbury, plans to build 22 wind turbines on the ridge.
The Butler Township supervisors took actions during Tuesday's special meeting that will lead to restrictions on wind turbine placement in the township. However, those actions will most likely lead to a legal battle between the township and the developer planning to erect wind turbines. ...The supervisors voted unanimously to reject all pending plans submitted by Broad Mountain relating to wind turbines currently before the township planning commission or board of supervisors.
A Georges Township man wants a Fayette County judge to nullify recent changes to the zoning ordinance related to windmills, claiming that officials "intentionally stifled" public comment on the matter. Thomas J. Bozek sued this week in Fayette County Court, and wants the amendments to the zoning ordinance - on June 25 and on Thursday - to be thrown out. ...On June 25, commission Chairman Vincent Zapotosky and Commissioner Vincent A. Vicites voted to amend the ordinance to allow windmills/wind turbines as a permitted use in certain zoning districts.
Tuesday's meeting of the Butler Township board of supervisors seemed more like a court of law as the supervisors and the zoning officer were questioned over and over about wind turbine issues. At times, the questioning seemed more like an interrogation of supervisors Kevin Kowalick, David Kessler and Robert Burns as well as Zoning Officer Thomas Squires.
The Brady Township supervisors agreed Monday to draft an ordinance to regulate wind energy in the township after a hosting a public forum on the issue. "If every single one of us would go by the old saying 'do unto others as you would have them do unto you,' (it) wouldn't be necessary for any ordinance to ever be drawn up - but life isn't that way," Supervisor Chairman Les Wachob said.
An Oregon company that last month received a split decision on its request for special exceptions for 22 wind turbines filed an appeal Wednesday against Fayette County's zoning hearing board. Iberdrola Renewables, formerly known as PPM Atlantic Renewable, claimed it has not "and cannot receive a fair and impartial hearing" before the zoning hearing board.
Logan Township supervisors will allow a wind farm developer to build the nation's next-to-tallest wind turbines in Chestnut Flats. Supervisors voted 4-to-1 Thursday night to allow Gamesa Energy to build 19 turbines north of Altoona, making them visible from 17th Street, Mill Run Road, Old Mill Run Road and along Route 36. Because of the vote, the turbines can placed on 335-foot towers, rather than 270 feet as allowed by ordinance.
Much of the Brady Township Supervisors July meeting dealt with the concerns of residents Gary and Sharon Gilmore and Mr. and Mrs. Gary Swope regarding the proposed wind farm in the township. ...Gary Swope said the township cannot write a weak ordinance due to the fear of litigation and Sharon Gilmore added that if the ordinance does not contain restrictions that will protect the health of all residents, litigation could come from residents.
Fayette County's zoning hearing board on Monday issued a split decision on an Oregon company's request for special exceptions for 22 wind turbines, granting 14 of the requests while rejecting eight others. ...The board then denied setback variances and special exceptions that had been requested for eight of the towers, meaning 14 of the towers have all of the required approvals for construction. The company will have to ensure those 14 comply with a number of conditions imposed by the board, including a measure that could shut them down temporarily if the blades kill too many bats.
Fayette County commissioners on Thursday approved an amendment to the county zoning ordinance that eliminates the need for a special exception for wind turbines. ...Prior to yesterday's action, a special exception and approval by the zoning hearing board were required to erect wind turbines on land zoned for agricultural and industrial use.
In a split decision on Thursday, the Fayette County commissioners voted to amend the county zoning ordinance to allow windmills/wind turbines as a permitted use in certain zoning districts, eliminating the need for wind energy companies to seek approval from the zoning hearing board.
The company proposing to develop a wind turbine farm on Buck Mountain will go before Black Creek Township for approval of its land development plan. The township supervisors accepted preliminary plans at its Tuesday night meeting. Penn Wind LLC of Sunbury wants to construct 22 wind turbines on top of the Buck Mountain ridge.
Fayette County commissioners took public comment Thursday on a proposal to eliminate the need for a special exception for wind turbines, but they did not immediately vote on it. Under the county's zoning ordinance, a special exception and approval by the Zoning Hearing Board is required to erect wind turbines on land zoned for agricultural and industrial use.