Noble Environmental Power says tough economic times has made it necessary for the company to release a number of easement agreements between the wind energy company and local landowners.
Twenty-two "releases were filed at the Franklin County Clerk's Office between April 17 and July 8. The documents say the agreements have "been fully satisfied, released, and discharged."
Noble Environmental Power spokesperson Maggy Wisniewski said the company has decided to focus its resources on more developed projects.
"Due to the challenging economic conditions, Noble Environmental Power has streamlined its wind generation portfolio," Wisniewski said, in a prepared statement. "We have decided to focus on later-stage development projects.
As a result, we have released the wind rights on some early-staged projects that we do not intend to further develop in 2009 or 2010.
The released agreements were between Noble Burke Windpark LLC, Noble Malone Windpark LLC, Noble Cherry Hill Windpark LLC and Noble Chateaugay Windpark LLC and local landowners.
Also named in the documents, were several property owners named in multiple released, are Debra and Ronald King, Ruth Cromp, James Tavernier, David, Mary, Sandra and Silas Vincent Jr., Kim and Mary Reynolds, Sheila and Adam Spaulding, Sharon and Joseph Germann, Alton and Janice Cook, Kenneth Philpot, Ronald and Deborah Carroll, Susan and Charles Gerow, Charlotte and Mark Martin, Judith and Michael Flynn, Darryl Bell, Richard and Kristine Cassidy, and Krista Gerow and Daniel Laflesh.
Several landowners contacted said the wind energy company contacted them via mail saying Noble was pulling out of the Burke area completely.
"I don't know what happened to Noble but they either overspent themselves, or the people who were backing them stopped backing them, but they pulled out of the Burke area," said James Tavernier. "I can say it's lost income for me, though."
Tavernier also noted that landowners were required to pay the $56 filing fee associated with the releases.
Another landowner, Town Councilman David Vincent, said Noble has not yet officially communicated its intent to the town board.
"Not that I know of, at least," Vincent said.
As a landowner, though, Vincent said he is "disappointed" to see the company abandon its plans for a Burke wind park.
"I have no regrets with Noble whatsoever," Vincent said. "Noble, in my opinion, had been good. I obviously like the revenue, and I thought it would create jobs and create revenue for the people of Burke."
Vincent, a dairy farmer struggling with low milk prices, said the easement release represents "a loss of revenue at a poor time."
Burke Town Supervisor Albert Johnson confirmed Vincent's assertion that Noble has not been in contact with the town regarding the status of its easement agreements nor its plans for a wind project in the town.
"They have not been in contact with the town board," he said. "I've been told by several residents that Noble is backing out of some or all of the agreements, but we haven't heard anything from Noble."
Johnson said the town's financial standing would likely not be impacted by the wind energy company's withdrawal from Burke.
"To my knowledge, there are no agreements between Noble and the Town of Burke," he said. "We haven't been getting anything from them."
While Noble was canceling some of its easement agreements, it was also released from 43 liens filed by Aristeo Construction Company of Livonia, Mich. The liens totaled $2.99 million.
The liens were filed in March.