Canadice is not outlawing wind farms, but the town wants to make it pretty difficult for any 400-foot turbines to get built here.
That’s the gist of a proposed wind-farm law up for public inspection on Monday, Dec. 11, at 7:30 p.m. at the Town Hall. It’s not the official hearing that precedes a Town Board vote; that could come in January. But it is the first time the public can read and comment on a full text that the Wind Farm Study Group has been revising over the last year.
The 11-page law would prohibit industrial towers in places where the Planning Board feels they would detract from the view.
“We live in a very scenic town,” said Charlie Gray, co-chairman of the Wind Farm Study Group. “If they put (towers) across Bald Hill overlooking the two watershed lakes, we might consider that detrimental.”
The law does not name any specific protected views though Gray said that could come later.
The law limits industrial turbines, meaning those built to sell electricity to the grid, to the same height as telecommunications towers: 195 feet. It limits their output to three-tenths of a megawatt.
That is half the height and a fraction of the output of the turbines proposed in nearby Prattsburgh and Cohocton, meaning a wind-energy company would likely have to apply for variances at the outset. The extra step was intentional.
“Why would we not want to have that control?” Gray asked.
The law imposes fewer requirements on smaller windmills meant to power a single home or business.
“We’re not trying to restrict the private towers,” Gray said.
The height restriction of 60 feet may also require a home or business owner to get a variance before putting up a windmill, however.
Richard Gammell, owner of Canadice Construction, a commercial framing operation, is seeking state certification to install windmills. He has completed class work and now needs field experience helping erect a single windmill, which he said are typically 100 feet tall with up to a 20-kilowatt output.
“I think that’s a little low,” he said of the 60-foot limit. “If they went with 120 to 130 feet, I would say it would be fine.”
To review a copy of the current proposal, stop by the Town Hall or visit www.canadice.org. Scroll to the Wind Farm Study Group in the upper right corner of the home page. Click on “Draft Changes to Town Code to Regulate Potential Wind Farms.” Then, scroll to the bottom of the page and look for “Click here to review proposed changes.”
By Lenore Friend
Messenger Post Staff
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