Neighbors say NO, so BigWind goes UNDERground in Ohio, literally

If you can’t work with them (the public, community, neighbors), then just go under them. BigWind is frustrated, so they want to do something that has never been done – bury their transmission lines underground, through a public right of way, to force their way into a community. Is anywhere safe???????

The proposed Black Fork Wind Farm in the northern reaches of both Crawford and Richland counties is stuck in a ditch after a Wednesday meeting of the Crawford County Commissioners.

Actually, it’s stuck trying to get into the ditch.

Representatives of Capital Power, the company developing the project, have asked commissioners for permission to bury power lines in nearly six miles of ditches along roads in both Vernon and Auburn Townships.

Doug Weisenauer, president of the commissioners, said permission is needed because Capital Power has not been given approval to run power lines through private farms to each of the 91 planned turbines. Since the ditches are public land, Weisenauer said the company hopes commissioners will be more lenient than some of the county’s farmers….

“I don’t think they should be running their power line in our right-of-way,” said Commissioner Jenny Vermillion. “It’s a private company; it’s not a public utility and our people don’t benefit from it.”

Crawford County Engineer Mark Baker brought copies of decisions made after similar requests in Kansas, Michigan and Minnesota. The commissioners — along with Vernon Township Trustee Ted Muntis and Auburn Township Trustee Tim Marcum — looked over the paperwork to see how it might apply to the Capital Power request….

A concern of those in attendance was that public right-of-ways are designed for public projects, and historically have only been crossed briefly by private projects. Vermillion noted that allowing one company to fully use the right-of-way would set a precedent letting all companies use the right-of-way.Source: Ditches leave hole in wind farm plans

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