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Woodstock wind towers to be in place by fall  

Credit:  By Ken Briggs, Advertiser Democrat, www.advertiserdemocrat.com 9 June 2011 ~~

WOODSTOCK – Andy Novi, from Patriot Renewables, told Woodstock Selectmen that his company is “aiming to start generating electricity by the end of November” at the Spruce Mountain wind turbine project.

Novi said a settlement was reached with the Friends of Spruce Mountain, a group that had filed an appeal of the project to the Maine Supreme Court. The non-public settlement was signed by the Court, and the appeal was withdrawn.

Patriot is closing on four properties and plans on starting construction in two weeks.

As a condition of the permit issued by the Department of Environmental Protection, Patriot Renewables will send Woodstock a one-time payment of $80,000, to be used for “conservation purposes.” Additionally, it will pay $20,000 a year for “tangible benefits,” as part of Maine’s wind power licensing law, for the life of the project.

Novi said the total height of each of the 20 planned turbines and towers is 405 feet. It is estimated that the project will be assessed by the town at $40,000,000.

The towers and turbine blades will be brought to the site from the Concord Pond side of Spruce Mountain.

Central Maine Power is rebuilding the distribution power lines on Cushman Road. Workers will be starting in July and hope to be finished by October.

Selectman Stephen Bies said “I have snowshoed that ridgeline. The woods are beautiful up there. I will miss it.”

The Planning Board granted building permits later that evening for the towers and operations building.

Pine Tree Paving was awarded this summer’s road construction contract, “pending further review of their specs” for a total of $123,581. This includes work on Mills Road, two sections of the Gore Road and parts of Curtis Hill Road. Railroad Street was included in the bid, but there is not enough money in the summer roads budget to fix it up.

Other bids were from Bruce Manzer at $153,239, and Pike Industries at $171,720.

One bid, from D.A. Wilson was received for the 1999 Sterling plow truck. Selectmen voted to accept it and sold the truck for about $21,000. This money will go into the reserve fund.

Code Enforcement Officer Joelle Whitman reported the Feeding Friendzy to be in full compliance with the completion of a fire escape. She said “The guy did a nice job.” She added she has been busy and is enjoying working for Woodstock.

Fire Chief Geff Inman reported that Greenwood passed its part of the enhanced mutual aid agreement and the two towns will start manning alternating fire stations on July 1. Cross training on various trucks will begin very soon.

Selectmen unanimously agreed to put the old fire station on Railroad Street out to bid with a minimum bid offer of $28,000.

Town Manager Vern Maxfield has a list of eight names he is considering for the Commercial Wind Energy Facility Ordinance Provisions Committee.

It was decided that the town should hold onto a small town-owned lot on Church Street. An abutter had approached Maxfield with a request to purchase it for the purposes of building a garage. Due to the type of buried debris on the lot, it will not be sold.

By a 2-1 vote Selectmen decided to enter into an agreement with Responsible Pet Care to handle stray animals. The other alternative is the more-distant Harvest Hills Animal Shelter.

The next selectmen’s meeting is June 21. It is hoped to be an abbreviated session, as there is a public hearing at 6:00 on Bob Breau’s petition to sell hard liquor and the SAD 44 budget meeting is at 7:00 in Bethel at Telstar.

Source:  By Ken Briggs, Advertiser Democrat, www.advertiserdemocrat.com 9 June 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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