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Who can complain and how? Planners study wind turbine issues  

Credit:  Jennifer Linn Hartley - Staff Writer, Ludington Daily News, www.ludingtondailynews.com 3 March 2011 ~~

How many complaints a person or a household should be able to lodge cost-free against wind turbines and how those complaints would be dealt with were among the topics the Mason County planning commissioners discussed Wednesday night.

Planning commissioners continued to pore over potential changes to the Mason County Zoning Ordinance in regards to wind turbines Wednesday at the Mason-Lake ISD building, a new location for planning commission meeting due to an anticipated large crowd. More than 75 people attended.

Late last year a group of concerned residents proposed an amendment to the ordinance, requesting more stringent rules for wind turbines in the county.

Consumers Energy has proposed 56 476-foot tall wind turbines in Riverton and Summit townships.

As the Mason County Zoning Ordinance is written now, a complainant must pay for the complaint, and if the wind turbine owner is found to be in violation, then the turbine owner pays and the complainant is reimbursed. The system is designed to guard against nuisance complaints.

Commissioners Wednesday discussed whether the complainant should have to pay to submit a complaint, and, if not, how many complaints each person or household should be allowed.

“The complainant out there shouldn’t have to pay,” said Commissioner Bruce Patterson. “It shouldn’t be up to the person who lives out there in that area to have to pay for the complaint. That’s just wrong.”

Commissioners discussed allowing three complaints from one household before a complainant has to pay. If, on the fourth complaint, the turbine is found to be out of compliance, then the turbine owner pays.

See the full story in today’s print and eEditions of the Ludington Daily News.

[rest of article available at source]

Source:  Jennifer Linn Hartley - Staff Writer, Ludington Daily News, www.ludingtondailynews.com 3 March 2011

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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