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Legislature asked to move windmill projects along

Time is of the essence when it comes to the proposed windmill projects in Herkimer County. At least that is what the legislators were told Wednesday night.

Representing the towns of Fairfield, Manheim, Norway, Stark and Warren, Fairfield resident Jeff Roache asked the legislature to remember to include the municipalities when negotiating a payment in lieu of taxes program with the wind energy companies. “The supervisors of these towns met on January 9 and they came to a consensus that they want to be included in the negotiations and that they want to have more input,” he said. “We are seeking a commitment from the legislature to include these towns and to disclose all information about the projects to the public.”
Roache said the legislature must make a commitment in order for the projects to move forward in Herkimer County, as the towns have passed ordinances and Atlantic Renewable, the company that is researching the viability of constructing windmills in Fairfield, has a permit request before the Fairfield Town Council. “This legislature must act quickly because if the town of Fairfield does not act on this permit in 30 to 50 days the project is going to go away,” Roache said. “The county is not responding. We need a dialogue between the towns, county and the companies and that is not happening. The towns need to know what kind of revenue they... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
Representing the towns of Fairfield, Manheim, Norway, Stark and Warren, Fairfield resident Jeff Roache asked the legislature to remember to include the municipalities when negotiating a payment in lieu of taxes program with the wind energy companies. “The supervisors of these towns met on January 9 and they came to a consensus that they want to be included in the negotiations and that they want to have more input,” he said. “We are seeking a commitment from the legislature to include these towns and to disclose all information about the projects to the public.”
Roache said the legislature must make a commitment in order for the projects to move forward in Herkimer County, as the towns have passed ordinances and Atlantic Renewable, the company that is researching the viability of constructing windmills in Fairfield, has a permit request before the Fairfield Town Council. “This legislature must act quickly because if the town of Fairfield does not act on this permit in 30 to 50 days the project is going to go away,” Roache said. “The county is not responding. We need a dialogue between the towns, county and the companies and that is not happening. The towns need to know what kind of revenue they stand to receive if they move forward with the windmill projects.”
District 14 Legislator Dennis Korce, chairman of the finance committee which is researching the proposed windmill projects in Herkimer County, said that it is not the county’s intention to leave the towns out of the negotiation process. “We do not want to sell away a viable PILOT program for the sake of moving the projects along,” Korce said. “We are still collecting information because much of the information we have is based on assumptions. We are waiting to receive real, hard information. It is not our intention to block the projects, in fact we want to stay neutral.”
Korce agreed that the towns must be kept informed of the proceedings, but said all parties involved must reach a fair agreement.
County Administrator James Wallace echoed Korce’s sentiment, saying that the county is still waiting for information from the companies and that all of the reports are not yet finished. “These reports contain a lot of assumptions, which is why we are still out there grabbing and looking for all the information we can. We can only use what we have, and right now we missing information. We do not want to disclose anything that may give people misconceptions about the projects and we do not want to start the spread of misinformation. We want to get this right.”
“If the companies take these projects and permits off the table people are going to say the legislature failed. We have to grab these projects quick,” Roache said. “The towns need to be involved and the county needs to share its information. The towns need to know what is going on.”
“The people are going to blame the legislature and the county if they allow these projects to go away,” Ed Mower of Jordanville said. “The legislature and the county are not helping to move the projects along, in fact they are slowing them down. This legislature must pass a positive resolution and allow the companies to build their windmills. They want to bring their windmills here and we should welcome them with open arms.”
“Time is critical,” Wes Miller of the town of Warren said. “If the county is not going to act then the projects should be moved out of the finance committee and to another committee that will. Opportunity is knocking at our door and we need to take advantage. The time is now.”
District 15 Legislator Patrick Russell asked Roache and the towns to provide the finance committee and the full legislature with copies of their resolutions. “If the people are truly behind these windmill projects we should have that information,” he said. “Right now we do not have the resolutions passed by the towns. We would like to see those resolutions and we would like to know if the people truly want the windmills.”
“We do not want to give away the farm and that is why we are doing our homework on this,” District 11 Legislator Vincent Bono said.

Source: http://www.littlefallstimes...

JAN 26 2006
https://www.windaction.org/posts/1085-legislature-asked-to-move-windmill-projects-along
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