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Tyrone organizers petition council to deny wind farm  

Organizers fighting a proposed lease agreement between Tyrone Borough and wind energy developer Gamesa USA obtained signatures of nearly 1,200 residents as they urged the new council to turn down the plan to bring turbines to Ice Mountain.

Robert Roseberry, one of those who gathered signatures of residents living in the 16686 zip code, said the wind farm puts the watershed at risk and will destroy the beauty of the mountain.

Roseberry said the group could have gathered more than the 1,195 signatures it brought to the council Monday, but they didn’t want to include people who didn’t live in the community.

Councilwoman Jen Bryan asked how organizers went about compiling the list and if getting signatures was difficult.

‘‘Most of the people were coming to us,’’ Roseberry said.

Jeff Morrisey, a driving force in the effort to stave off Gamesa’s development of turbines on Ice Mountain, said he continues to e-mail and send information to Tyrone Mayor Jim Kilmartin and borough officials.

Morrisey said the group will continue to have its voice heard and hopes to gather signatures up to the point the council puts the matter to a vote.

Kilmartin said after the meeting that the number of signatures should carry significant weight with the eight elected officials charged with making the decision, one that could net the borough $60,000 to $90,000 a year.

Of the 25 wind mills planned as part of the Sandy Ridge Wind Farm, 15 are slated for borough property.

The borough’s watershed encompasses 3,800 acres in Snyder Township, and its decision could mean Gamesa scraps the entire farm, company officials have said.

Roseberry also produced snapshots taken Saturday of a toppled test tower on the proposed wind farm site.

The test tower near Route 350 off of the watershed property, is lighter than the planned windmills but still points out the company’s lack of quality control, Roseberry said.

Kilmartin said a vote is not imminent now that two new council members are on board.

‘‘It will take them some time to get caught up,’’ Kilmartin said of Councilman Mark Kosoglow and Councilwoman and former Mayor Pat Stoner.

By Greg Bock

Altoona Mirror

8 January 2008

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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