BigWind on Fox moved to Friday & Seneca county fights BigWind

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Seneca county fighting BigWind in this pic and videos accompany.  In addition, the Tucker Carlson interview with Tx State Senator Donna Campbell has been moved to Friday night….

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Van Wert county commissioner opinion of BigWind

A Van Wert county commissioner opinion about the new potential for a 35,000 Apex project. He compares this to living next to a hog farm…which no one wants to do. If you have heard that communities are torn apart by the wind industry, he hints at that reality in Van Wert. What will happen if the Apex Long Prairie Project moves forward? It looks like the one commissioner wants to leave this decision up to the people who will reside amongst it. Read a lot of common sense in this article…

Wanna start an argument? Go to almost any random group of people in Van Wert County and state your opinion about windmills. Chances are, you will quickly find someone with whom to disagree…

But, if you are going to build something on your property, you are subject to a tax assessment. Real property taxes are assessed on all land, buildings and structures. If a property owner would choose to build a windmill, they would be taxed on its full value.

The question then is should a wind farm receive a tax break? The pro crowd argues that, yes, most definitely, this is economic development and a tax break should be automatic. The current wind farm is taxed pursuant to a Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) wherein the schools, county, townships, and other agencies receive a fixed payment instead of the windmills being normally assessed. This results in about a 70-80 percent reduction in tax payments.

A few years ago, before the state changed the setbacks and after several conferences with our township trustees, the Ohio Power Siting Board and Iberdrola, we determined that the PILOT eliminated our ability to negotiate with wind companies and was not in our county’s best interest. We revoked the Alternative Energy Zone designation for our county that had allowed the Blue Creek Wind Farm to be taxed under the PILOT.

Should the setbacks be returned to a manageable distance for Apex or Iberdrola to build a farm, this is the issue we would present to voters. We would ask the affected townships and the wind company to negotiate a tax scheme that has a chance to be approved and then submit it for an up or down vote.

A concern becomes who gets to vote on this issue? It does not seem appropriate that areas that stand only to benefit from a taxing scheme be allowed to vote to burden another area. For example, if a mega hog farm would want to locate on the outskirts of Convoy and the tax benefits would accrue to every other part of the county, what might be the result in Middle Point of that vote? Or if the roles were reversed, what might be the result in Convoy?

Van Wert City Schools would receive a significant monetary benefit if turbines were located in Liberty Township. But it is the residents of Liberty Township who would be burdened by the presence of the windmills and it would be that township’s tax revenues that are affected by a reduction in the amounts paid by windmill owners. I don’t know a definition of fair that would allow Van Wert City voters, an overwhelming majority of the school district, to determine this issue for Liberty Township….

Personally, I think I’ve been clear on my position in the past. I think windmills are horrible federal policy but as long as the federal government is intent on bankrupting our next generation, I wouldn’t object to see some of that money get wasted locally.

If you are in the pro crowd, I would advise against trying to pressure us to force windmills on a population that, as of now, does not want them. That has been the tactic of the wind companies for the last few years and it continues to have a zero chance of success. Replace lecturing with negotiation – the antis are well aware of the reasons to build these things and are not convinced. Perhaps you can pay their electric bills to win some support….

 

Bigwind using creative tactics in Ohio to get around SB310/HB483

Lots to report as news of Everpower’s request to amend their Buckeye Wind I project deadline hits the paper in both Urbana and Springfield.  On one hand Everpower appears determined to press on while on the other hand they appear cautious.   This compares to Iberdrola who has determined that they will be unable to find enough willing leaseholders in Van Wert and Putnam Counties to make their Dog Creek and Leipsic Wind projects possible due to the new setback requirements (remember, there is nothing that prohibits them from requesting ‘waivers’ from leaseholders, in order to avoid our new setback legislation).  As we have seen, there is resistance in Putnam County but on Tuesday the County Commissioners went ahead and approved the County as an Alternative Energy Zone thinking it might help.  We will be interested to hear more about this.  We recall that Van Wert County rescinded its AEZ designation.   (Note: We are amazed that the wind industry calls the setback area the “fall zone” – completely ignoring/denying blade shear, flicker and noise issues!)

By seeking to extend its deadline to build until 2018, it appears that Everpower hopes to dodge the effects of both recently passed legislation.  By amending their certificate prior to September 14th, they avoid the possibility the new setback requirements on Phase I would apply to them and by moving the extension to 2018, they have a chance to see the re-imposition of a renewable energy mandate after the legislative Study Committee completes its work. The Urbana paper reports: “The motion further states that even if the appeals are resolved prior to March 22, 2015, the company will be left with insufficient time to finalize financing, develop final engineering plans, complete engineering, obtain procurement and construction contracts, and review plans with the board’s staff.”….

Attorneys for Everpower Renewables filed a request for an extension for the first phase of the Buckeye Wind Project Tuesday, citing several ongoing legal fights over various aspects of the project.

Everpower’s attorneys are seeking an extension until May 28, 2018, to begin construction. The project’s certificate had been approved by the Ohio Power Siting Board in 2010, but expires in March of next year, according to court documents.

Everpower wants to build two phases of the project at the same time, but ongoing litigation has held up construction, said Jason Dagger, a spokesman for Everpower. If the certificate expires, Everpower would have to start the lengthy certification process from the beginning, said Matt Butler, a spokesman for the Ohio Power Siting Board…

via Everpower seeks extension for wind farm | www.springfieldnewssun.com.

Ohio wind sites now ‘on hold’ now

Does anyone else think this article is coincidental to appear the day after a front page article which covered the Democratic governor candidates opposition to SB 310 and HB 483? The Lima News is showing preferential support of a Democratic candidate and our media should not be doing this. Anyway, this article makes us want to start playing violin. Should we feel sorry for them? NO! There is absolutely nothing that stops these companies from negotiating new contracts with their leaseholders, which allows them to ignore the setback on their own property. The new Ohio setbacks are much more in line, but still much smaller than many worldwide setbacks.  Setbacks are meant to protect the people of Ohio, not big business.  As more of these machines encroach on our communities, it is just a matter of time before a blade shear becomes life/property threatening. It was only a couple of short years ago, when the Iberdrola blade sheared in Van Wert and pieces flew over 750 feet away!  This reminds me of the arguments against smoking in public places. Even though you may not become ill with lung cancer, you cannot deny the existence.  BigWind has been denying the risks associated with their massive machines. Machines that continue to grow larger and larger every year…. 

Changing topics, it is very unfortunate that Putnam county has become a renewable energy zone. Why? They will have absolutely no power to say no to BigWind, if developments come. Van Wert, after experiencing 1 wind site, chose to rescind their AEZ.  Why don’t some learn from the mistakes of others?….

A pair of possible wind farm projects are “on hold” after a pair of legislative actions changed the rules on renewable energy.Iberdrola Renewables has put its Dog Creek Wind Farm in Van Wert and its Leipsic Wind Farm in Putnam County on hold, citing changes to the “setback” rules...

On Tuesday, the Putnam County commissioners still passed a resolution designating the county as an alternative energy zone to show its support.

 

“The Board is willing to provide real and tangible personal property tax exemption to support the development of alternative energy generation facilities, provided the appropriate service payments are made,” according to the resolution.

 

The Dog Creek Wind Farm called for 50 wind turbines. The new rules would’ve left room for only seven. The Leipsic project called for 75 turbines, but the new rules would’ve only allowed three.

 

“It’s not just about the money to lease the acreage,” Litchfield said. “Both projects would need about 50 percent more acreage for adjacent properties. … But some people just don’t want to lease their land, for any number of reasons.”…

via Two wind farms in area now on hold –.