Dennis Glotfelty, one of the county’s commissioners, was recently quoted by The Baltimore Sun as “estimating that 70% of county residents support the [Synergics] wind farm (sic), while about 30 percent oppose it.” He goes on to further state that “the county stands to get about $1 million a year in taxes [from the project].”
Perhaps he was misquoted. In the event he was not, however, perhaps he would produce evidence for his calculations. I’d love to see the scientific opinion poll he used, for example, or any attempt to measure opinion about this issue produced by the Board of County Commissioners.
A few years ago, the Public Service Commission did hold a public meeting on the matter, expressly to gauge local public opinion. Over 70 people spoke; less than a handful favored the wind installation. Mr. Glotfelty missed this meeting, perhaps because he did not want to call attention to the fact he had a stake in the situation, for he was one of the members of the Sanitary Commission who surreptitiously voted to permit massive wind turbines on county-owned land.
As for the million dollars annually in tax revenues from wind, perhaps the commissioner would produce for public inspection a surety agreement guaranteeing such payment. For when I asked the Synergics spokesman, when he was under oath at the Public Service Commission evidentiary hearing, whether his company would stand behind its specific pledge to provide the county with $750,000 in tax revenues in the first year alone, there was a long pause. He finally said his company would do “what the law requires.” Indeed.
Massive wind plants precipitate incivility, pitting neighbor against neighbor. A major duty of government is to anticipate, then eliminate or mitigate this kind of incivility. Those who endorse or profit from placing such industrial complexes near the homes of others evidently don’t have a clue about how to foster civil society.
6 December 2007
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