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Clarendon panel to join airport board

An airport zoning commission will be charged with the task of creating regulations to address safety issues surrounding the Rutland Southern Vermont Regional Airport. ...The decision to create the commission was sparked by Vermont Community Wind Farm's plans for an 80-megawatt industrial wind operation that would include installation of 40 wind turbines on ridgelines in Clarendon, Ira and other towns.

CLARENDON - An airport zoning commission will be charged with the task of creating regulations to address safety issues surrounding the Rutland Southern Vermont Regional Airport.

The Clarendon Select Board gave its approval recently to allow the town's planning commission to serve on the newly formed airport board.

The group will be assisted by an advisory panel comprised of representatives from neighboring communities as well as officials from the airport and other regional groups with an interest in the facility.

Select Board Chairman Michael Klopchin indicated state statute allowed the formation of such commissions, which he said would consider adopting regulations within a specified zone.

"They're being advised to consider an airport zoning district within a 10-mile radius of the runway," Klopchin explained.

The decision to create the commission was sparked by Vermont Community Wind Farm's plans for an 80-megawatt industrial wind operation that would include installation of 40 wind turbines on ridgelines in Clarendon, Ira and other towns.

"We were concerned about what may happen when they put up 400 to 500 foot towers on the peaks and the impact it would have on... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

CLARENDON - An airport zoning commission will be charged with the task of creating regulations to address safety issues surrounding the Rutland Southern Vermont Regional Airport.

The Clarendon Select Board gave its approval recently to allow the town's planning commission to serve on the newly formed airport board.

The group will be assisted by an advisory panel comprised of representatives from neighboring communities as well as officials from the airport and other regional groups with an interest in the facility.

Select Board Chairman Michael Klopchin indicated state statute allowed the formation of such commissions, which he said would consider adopting regulations within a specified zone.

"They're being advised to consider an airport zoning district within a 10-mile radius of the runway," Klopchin explained.

The decision to create the commission was sparked by Vermont Community Wind Farm's plans for an 80-megawatt industrial wind operation that would include installation of 40 wind turbines on ridgelines in Clarendon, Ira and other towns.

"We were concerned about what may happen when they put up 400 to 500 foot towers on the peaks and the impact it would have on airport safety," Klopchin said.

The board chairman noted while the VCWF project may have been the impetus for creating the airport zoning commission, he said the group would be looking at a variety of safety concerns.

"Hopefully, we'll have citizens from other communities on the advisory panel to offer input so as not to step on any issues in their towns," Klopchin said.

The airport zoning commission will be reviewing regulations adopted by similar boards in other Vermont communities with airport facilities in order to create the most effective safety standards over the long term, he said.

"We're looking to extend the runway for the health of the town, the Airport Industrial Park and the whole Rutland region," Klopchin said. "Therefore, this commission will be working diligently on airport zoning regulations keeping the entire region in mind."

VCWF spokesman Jeff Wennberg said the Federal Aviation Administration had primary jurisdiction "over matters relative to airports and aircraft safety. Whatever the FAA says in relation to our project is certainly binding and will certainly be followed."

In a related matter, the town of Clarendon has raised concerns with the state Public Service Board that VCWF's temporary wind measurement tower on Susie's Peak was not installed in the approved location.

Klopchin said he would be meeting with the town's attorney to discuss options on how to proceed with the matter. The state Department of Public Service has recommended VCWF be fined $10,000 for "failing to obtain approval for a material deviation from its approved petition."

VCWF acknowledged in its response to the PSB the temporary tower was 381 feet south of the location described in its petition for a certificate of public. However, the change of location was not a material deviation and civil penalties were not warranted, according to VCWF filings.

"The reality of the situation is that the adjusted location supports a shorter tower, smaller area cleared, and it's further from sensitive ecosystems," Wennberg said.


Source: http://www.rutlandherald.co...

DEC 21 2009
https://www.windaction.org/posts/23729-clarendon-panel-to-join-airport-board
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