There are many ways to write a wind ordinance and many communities are producing and adopting various forms of rules and regulations to control potential problems created with wind machines, proving the state may have promoted this form of electrical generation before the necessary studies were conducted, a rare move, in that the state normally forms study groups before moving ahead with any legislation.
Within our area, the towns of Rumford, Weld, Phillips, New Vineyard, Peru, Sumner, Bethel, Greenwood, Woodstock, Dixfield, Byron, Farmington, Wilton and Paris have either adopted rules, considered rules or are in the process of writing rules.
Citizens are recognizing that wind turbines DO have impacts and are asking for action locally. It is always a good thing when people are willing to give time and effort in response to citizen concerns, rather it be select boards, planning boards or citizen appointed committees.
I have been following the attempts in Rumford to author an ordinance acceptable to Rumford voters. I am impressed with their thoroughness of approach and their desire to listen to citizen ideas. Democracy has a chance. Could it be, a few people who have spent countless hours studying the issues surrounding wind turbines have local officials a reason to no longer lament about lack of public participation at their meetings? Good Job, Rumford.
Thumbs up to Peru also. They reached out to the people, asking them to respond to a survey about their thoughts on wind projects in Peru. They got a tremendous response. I suspect they will move forward soon and join the many other communities hard at work advancing the purest form of democracy: local control, of the people, by the people, for the people.
Regretfully, the leaders in Dixfield have given the people of Dixfield little hope of putting an effort into writing and bringing to vote, a document to control a wind project(s), and to be honest, I am as much to blame for this as anyone.
Lacking the sophistication to understand the government process, I was unable to get anyone of our leaders to give the people of town an opportunity to vote “yea” or “nay” to wind projects. I still appeal to them when allowed to speak, but it feels like a dead end road. Am I the only one that feels like this?
I would welcome any ideas to how to go about getting the people of my community a say in this particular, fast approaching development.
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