Articles filed under Zoning/Planning
Over 50 residents attended the first public hearing, making known there concerns about the possibility of large wind turbines affecting the town's scenery, noise levels and quality of life. Many residents spoke out against the turbines, fearing that passing a law allowing smaller turbines would open the door for commercial wind farms to create facilities in the town. The vagueness of the law, they said, did not limit the turbine's height or power output.
The DeWitt City Council doesn't expect a lot of wind turbines to be raised in the next month or so, but that didn't stop it from placing a 90-day moratorium on the construction of the structures, said city administrator Brian Vick. After participating in a planning and zoning training session at Michigan State University last month, Vick said he and other city officials are trying to keep ahead of the curve in regards to renewable energy.
A local wind farm company hopes to get the green light to spin. Tuesday, Western Energy will appeal the Planning and Zoning Committee's decision that previously denied their special use permit. The company wants to build 66 turbines on about 5,000 acres in a private ranch just east of Shelley. ...Neighbors are seeing red over this spinning saga saying it will destroy the scenery. But Thompson argues it's his property and the view isn't a guarantee.
Two days before a special town meeting, Aquinnah selectmen are sharply divided over whether a pioneering energy bylaw should go to a vote, leaving the future uncertain for the Island's first set of regulations on energy use. ...The bylaw focuses purely on wind turbines and would form part of a separate energy district of critical planning concern for Aquinnah, the only Island town with its own townwide district of critical planning concern.
A National-led Cabinet would decide which crucial projects to fast-track under its plans to shake up the Resource Management Act (RMA), party environment spokesman Nick Smith says. National says fixing the act would be one of its priorities if it wins this year's general election. It wants to introduce a two-phase system in which priority consents would have to be processed within nine months. The proposal, announced by party leader John Key and Smith at the weekend, has generated cautious interest.
Months of hearings, votes, re-votes and debate are finished in one wind energy company's bid to build wind turbines in Wolverine Canyon. Monday, Bingham County Commissioners approved Ridgeline Energy's application to put up a 150-turbine wind farm. They had been trying since November to get the approval.
Bingham County has spent the past several months settling disputes about the proposed wind farm project in the Wolverine area. Today, the county commissioners discussed two appeals that had been received in regards to a recent decision. Both appeals were related to the Bingham County Planning and Zoning Commission's decision to give a special use permit for the windfarm. Both appeals were discussed in depth during today's public meeting and the county commission voted unanimously to deny the appeals.
Wiscoy Valley test site could lead to wind turbines in Winona County Commercial wind power is slated to arrive in Fillmore County, Minn., while Trempealeau County, Wis., has rebuffed it so far. Now it appears Winona County may be the next municipality to decide whether - or how - to embrace wind power. A Wiscoy Township man wants to erect a 60-meter-high temporary tower that would collect weather data to determine whether a commercial wind turbine is feasible on his property.
"I'm not opposed to alternative energy or looking at options," said Alderwoman Judy Compton. "But if repercussions exist, it's our job to protect this city's residents." For example, state law essentially requires safety, productivity and cost-effectiveness when it comes to wind turbines, but Compton said Madison needs to worry about more than that. "We have to consider covenants and restrictions, historic districts and different architectural factors," she said. "We have different zoning codes that need to be figured out. We're dealing with the human factor here."
The town approved an 80-foot windmill, but Fuller needs the tower at least 20 feet higher to produce enough energy to qualify for a grant program with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. ...In June, the Planning Board approved the first residential windmill in Gorham, a tower up to 140 feet high on a farm on Jones Road over looking Canandaigua Lake. Owner Jack Schilbe knew his proposed windmill had to be at least 100 feet high to produce enough wind energy to power his 100-acre farm. He asked that additional footage be added to his proposal to give him more latitude to qualify for grant money.
Appellant party Maniototo Environmental Society (MES) counsel Mike Holm, of Auckland, lodged an application for new evidence to be heard in relation to possible cumulative effects of both Project Hayes and the Mahinerangi wind farm. As TrustPower's $400 million Mahinerangi project, which would sit southeast of the proposed Project Hayes site, was granted consent last month, there were possible cumulative effects of both developments to be considered by the Environment Court in dealing with Meridian's proposed 176-turbine farm on the Lammermoor Range.
Horizon Wind Energy LLC could begin construction on a proposed wind farm west of Brookston in about a year if all goes well with new county zoning ordinances and if design plans are developed by then. The ordinance issue, a county-wide revision of zoning ordinances in general, will include a wind ordinance with setbacks for wind turbines and other details as part of the overhaul. County Board of Commissioners President John Heimlich said the ordinance plan will come before county commissioners on Monday. "It's on the agenda for Monday," Heimlich said.
While most of the updates to the county master plan were put on hold at Tuesday's Plan Commission meeting, one section on towers was approved to include resolutions on wind turbines. County Planner Mitch Bishop said the intent was to provide protection for county residents. Other portions of the master plan were tabled so commission members could think more about proposed ordinances. Bishop said there has been speculation from developers wanting to construct large wind turbines in the county and there were no ordinances regarding them.
A state panel evaluating proposals for an offshore wind turbine pilot project will have until Oct. 2 instead of Aug. 20 to make a recommendation to the state Board of Public Utilities. The panel needs more time to evaluate five companies' proposals, some of which are "large, extensive," Doyal H. Siddell, a BPU spokesman, said Thursday. But the six-week delay did not sit well with two observers.
Sheffield Green Party has reopened a debate on whether a controversial wind farm should be built in the north of the city. Council officers said Westwood Country Park at High Green would be an ideal site for up to six 100-metre wind turbines. The council agreed to do a feasibility study about whether the site was suitable. ... Because the Greens are a minority party, they are highly unlikely to force the council into a U-turn. The Lib Dems have already told officers to find alternative, as yet unidentified, sites and are adamant the wind farm will not be built at High Green.
A second wind farm is on Logan County's horizon. On the heels of Texas-based Horizon Wind Energy receiving a conditional-use permit from the Logan County Board to erect 29 wind turbines in the Emden area, another company said Wednesday it plans to construct a wind farm in another part of the county. The farm, to be called Sugar Creek Wind One, has already started the process of contacting landowners in the New Holland and Middletown areas to obtain land leases for turbines. Stan Komperda, a consultant with Conestoga-Rovers & Associates ...announced Wednesday a joint effort of American Wind Energy Management and Oak Creek Energy Systems to begin the process of erecting turbines in the county.
The cumulative effects of the Mahinerangi wind farm and others around New Zealand needed to be considered before a decision could be made about Project Hayes, Environment Court judge Jon Jackson said in Cromwell yesterday. Judge Jackson was responding to a question from Maniototo Environmental Society counsel Mike Holm about the appropriateness of making an application for new evidence - including the Mahinerangi wind farm decision released by the Environment Court this week - to be heard. The judge agreed it was appropriate.
Tazewell County State's Attorney Stuart Umholtz said at the board meeting Wednesday night that he has asked Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan to deliver an opinion on the enterprise zone's expansion. A company called Horizon Wind Energy has requested that Tazewell County and the City of Pekin expand their enterprise zone by providing a connecting strip 24 miles long and 3 feet wide. The strip would extend from the existing enterprise zone out to the southern-most area of Tazewell county and connect to 38 wind turbine sites. ...New enterprise zones cannot be created and the expansion of an existing one must be contiguous. "Respect the rule of law," Umholtz told board members. He said that during his career as state's attorney, he has never before delivered a memorandum to board members advising them that they are doing something wrong.
Proposed regulations for wind energy conversion systems have been recommended for adoption by the Fulton County Board. If adopted, the new rules would be included in the county zoning ordinance. The Fulton County Zoning Board of Appeals voted 4-2 to recommend such action following hearings held Wednesday at the Fulton County Health Department. ...Lynch noted noise can pose a concern if it is not addressed properly. Noise for both small and large wind-energy systems is proposed to be limited to 60 decibels, measured from the boundary lines of property where such systems are located. This also would comply with minimum noise requirements set by the Illinois Pollution Control Board.
Farmers hoping to build wind turbines in West Lincoln will have to wait until September to allow regional policies to be put in place. A public meeting concerning wind energy policies and rules will be held at the September 8 planning committee meeting in West Lincoln. Currently, there is a delay on the creation of any wind energy facilities within the region, so that policies can be put in place prior to the processing of any winder energy project applications.