Herkimer County has been discussing wind energy projects for many years with more potential projects popping up every year.
There’s the Fairfield and Manheim wind projects, the Jordanville wind project, and discussion by the village of Frankfort Board of Trustees about developing a project in Frankfort. Now schools are beginning to get involved.
At a recent meeting, the Herkimer Central School District Board of Education talked about the possibility of placing a windmill at the elementary school.
The question about the feasibility of doing that was raised by board president Bob Mhevic.
He recommended teaming with Herkimer County Community College for the project.
“This could be a great learning tool for the kids,” Mhevic said. “We could power a couple classrooms with it and use it to teach the students about wind energy.”
“It’s the wave of the future,” board member Tom Lanza added.
Board members agreed that it was something that should be looked into and researched.
“The wind profile at the elementary school is pretty good,” Mhevic said.
Mhevic added that the board should look into getting some funding from the state, if possible, to complete the project.
Elementary school principal Kathy Carney said she would be all for placing a windmill at the school.
This discussion about the involvement of the college comes just a month after Herkimer County Legislator John Brezinski talked about involving the college in a windmill project at the top of the hill behind the college.
Brezinski says ultimately he would like to see the new Herkimer County Correctional Facility put up on the hill way in the back and developing a windmill project back there as well.
“This would provide the county the power it needs to possibly develop a two-part program,” Brezinski said. “One would be involving the governmental end of it like the jail and the college, the other would be the safety aspect at the college.”
Brezinski thinks with the jail up there and more officers around the campus, it would cut-down on the potential for crime or mischief by the students.
Brezinski says it’s important to use the natural resources that are available in Herkimer County, such as wind and timber.
Brezinski adds that he is in discussions with the college about the possibility and feasibility of such a project.
The college would not specifically comment on either of the potential wind projects that might team up with the college, saying that the projects were too far down the road and nothing was confirmed yet.
By Kim Dunne
Telegram Staff Writer
16 January 2008