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EMDC Gets OK For Testing Tower In East Haven

EMDC, doing business as East Haven Windfarm, was issued a certificate of public good by the Vermont Public Service Board on Friday.

The Ginn Company, owners of the Burke Mountain Ski Area, bought the development rights on East Haven Mountain from EMDC in April of this year. Part of the agreement at the time was that if any wind project was proposed in the future, Ginn would work with EMDC on the project.

David Rapaport, vice president of East Haven Windfarm, said whether the 197-foot tower would be installed was up to the Ginn Company.

“It’s not our decision,” Rapaport said Monday. “They bought the development rights. We think they may want to because of the electrical demand with their new development.”

Ginn plans on building up to 800 new housing units, a golf course, hotel and a 15-acre complex where the existing Midburke Lodge now sits. All this, plus upgrades to water and sewer systems will more than double the total amount of power Lyndonville Electric Department now provides. Where that extra power will come from is a question no one can answer now, according to LED manager Ken Mason.

Representatives of the Ginn Company could not be reached for comment Monday.

In December 2004, EMDC filed for a certificate of public good to put up wind measurement towers on unnamed mountains in Brighton and Ferdinand, in addition to the East Haven site. The first two were approved, but the PSB decided more information was needed for the last. Burke Mountain Academy owned the ski area at the time and was looking for a buyer. BMA claimed that the prospect of wind turbines three miles away would deter development. BMA subsequently sold the ski area to the Ginn Company in the fall of 2005 and objections to East Haven Windfarm’s plans were dropped.

EMDC filed for a certificate of public good in the fall of 2003 to erect four 1.5-megawatt turbines on East Mountain, another mountain in East Haven, at the site of the former U.S. Air Force radar base. That petition was denied in July of this year.

By Jeanne Miles, Staff Writer