PORT HOPE – As a preventative measure, this village’s council approved a wind energy conversion ordinance at its regular meeting this month, prohibiting wind turbines from being erected on private property within the village limits.
Port Hope Village Council President Gary Schave said the ordinance is the same as the county ordinance, which states that wind turbines can only be installed on property zoned agricultural. The ordinance states any turbines set up on agricultural-zoned property must be set back from the property line by 1 1/2 times the height of the turbine, said Russell Lundberg, Huron County Building and Zoning director. This requires that the parcel of land be at least 1 acre.
Lundberg said the Village of Port Hope was not instructed by the county to pass such an ordinance, and the village does not have to submit the ordinance for review.
The county’s ordinance also states that wind turbines cannot be installed along shoreline areas, he said.
Lundberg said several townships around the county have adopted ordinances similar to the county ordinance. He said Lake Township currently is looking at whether to put strict guidelines in place for erecting wind turbines or to ban them altogether.
Schave said no one in the Village of Port Hope had installed a wind turbine on private property.
In other business at the village council meeting, the board voted to hire the village’s engineers, Stiverson & Associates, to create the Asset Management Report to give to the state regarding the transfer of funds from the village major street fund to the village local street fund. According to village Clerk Vicki Koglin, the village receives monies from the state for major streets and local streets, and these funds have to be kept separate. In order to transfer monies from one fund to the other, an asset management report must be filed with the state. Stiverson & Associates will do the village’s engineering for the streets.
Koglin and Schave said the village transfers 25 percent of the major street monies into the local street fund because the village needs more money to work on local streets than major streets. The village has just two major streets that it is responsible for maintaining: Portland and State streets. The rest of the streets are local streets, and M-25 is maintained by the Michigan Department of Transportation, Schave said.
The board adopted the tax roll assessment, with all council members voting yes except for Chris Gust.
The board appointed Arnold Wingblad to the village planning commission.
Board members instructed the village secretary to write a letter in support of the Huron City Museums seeking grant monies. The support letter was a request by Huron City Museums, Koglin said.
By Traci L. Weisenbach
25 January 2008
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