Article

Preliminary work begins on Utah's first wind farm

The nine turbines will make up the first wind farm in Utah, which is one of the only Western states without one. ...Currently, the land is worth just more than half a million dollars, Hiskey said. When the windmills and generators are added to the property, it will be worth $25.5 million. "In our first year, we would receive $66,719," she said, referring to what the tax collection will be with the rebate. Mikell said the agreement is the best possible solution for the company as well as the tax beneficiaries. The company will receive a tax break, and land will be developed that could not be used otherwise. "The turbines were actually the least impact thing that could be built there," she said. "Getting something [built on the property] is better than nothing."

The wind in Spanish Fork Canyon is finally going to blow some money into the city and its schools.

Work on the wind farm at the mouth of the canyon began almost three weeks ago, and tax revenues should start to flow into the city after construction is completed, said Wasatch Wind spokeswoman Christine Mikell.

"It's under construction," she said. "It will be up and running by June."

Although the 2.1 megawatt turbines may be up and testing power earlier than June, Mikell said such a development is optimistic.

Between now and January, the ground will be prepared for the giant turbines, so not much progress will be visible. The towers and turbines should go up in late January and early February.

The nine turbines will make up the first wind farm in Utah, which is one of the only Western states without one. There are currently two windmills at the Point of the Mountain. Mikell said those turbines are 225- and 660-kilowatt machines, and they serve only Camp Williams, which does not qualify them as a wind farm.

"A wind farm is usually built to provide power needs for homes and businesses," she said.

Property taxes from the farm will be divvied up between Spanish Fork, the Nebo School District, Central... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

The wind in Spanish Fork Canyon is finally going to blow some money into the city and its schools.

Work on the wind farm at the mouth of the canyon began almost three weeks ago, and tax revenues should start to flow into the city after construction is completed, said Wasatch Wind spokeswoman Christine Mikell.

"It's under construction," she said. "It will be up and running by June."

Although the 2.1 megawatt turbines may be up and testing power earlier than June, Mikell said such a development is optimistic.

Between now and January, the ground will be prepared for the giant turbines, so not much progress will be visible. The towers and turbines should go up in late January and early February.

The nine turbines will make up the first wind farm in Utah, which is one of the only Western states without one. There are currently two windmills at the Point of the Mountain. Mikell said those turbines are 225- and 660-kilowatt machines, and they serve only Camp Williams, which does not qualify them as a wind farm.

"A wind farm is usually built to provide power needs for homes and businesses," she said.

Property taxes from the farm will be divvied up between Spanish Fork, the Nebo School District, Central Utah Water Conservancy District and Utah County. Wasatch Wind received a 70 percent property tax rebate for the first 10 years of the 20-year contract to help start the farm, Mikell said.

Lana Hiskey, spokeswoman for the Nebo School District, said the district normally would receive 77 percent of the property taxes collected from the farm, but with the rebate it will receive a third of the amount. Despite losing some money, the district was happy to make the concession to ensure the wind farm could come to Spanish Fork.

Without the rebate, the district would receive around $202,000 annually from the property taxes when the wind farm is complete, she said. But Wasatch Wind couldn't build the wind farm without the rebate. The compromise was a win-win situation, she said, because the farm will significantly raise the value of the property it sits on.

Currently, the land is worth just more than half a million dollars, Hiskey said. When the windmills and generators are added to the property, it will be worth $25.5 million.

"Our 77 percent right now is $4,602 a year. In our first year, we would receive $66,719," she said, referring to what the tax collection will be with the rebate.

Mikell said the agreement is the best possible solution for the company as well as the tax beneficiaries. The company will receive a tax break, and land will be developed that could not be used otherwise.

"The turbines were actually the least impact thing that could be built there," she said. "Getting something [built on the property] is better than nothing."

Spanish Fork has lent its land for four of the turbines, and Mikell said the city has shown it is progressive when it comes to clean energy.

Joe Thomas, mayor of Spanish Fork, said the city will receive very little money from property taxes, but it will get revenue because Wasatch Wind is leasing some land from the city. The lease payments will be approximately half a million dollars during the 20-year contract.

Helping the company build in the canyon is a good move for everybody involved, Thomas said.

"This deal is about the biggest win-win," he said. "We won't get it any other way ... if we don't help them."

Mikell said different areas in the state have been studied for years by many people, and Spanish Fork Canyon is the best possible place to have a wind farm.

Thomas agreed.


 


Source: http://www.heraldextra.com/...

NOV 18 2007
https://www.windaction.org/posts/11972-preliminary-work-begins-on-utah-s-first-wind-farm
back to top