CLIFTON, Maine – Planning board members gave the Pisgah Mountain wind farm project provisional approval at their June meetings and is hosting a series of three meetings about the wind project in the next couple of weeks, Chairman Eric Johns said Saturday.
The final approval for the estimated $25 million wind farm is on the agenda for the Oct. 12 planning board meeting.
Bangor resident Paul Fuller and other Pisgah Mountain LLC partners want to put up five Vestas V90-1.8 MW wind turbines that reportedly would generate electricity for 3,000 to 4,000 Maine homes.
Each of the five turbines will be approximately 308 feet tall at the hub and 455 feet at the top of the propeller blade and would sit at the top of Pisgah Mountain, just south of Rebel Hill Road.
“The provision approval is complete and subsequent to that they have come back with all the documents needed” for final approval. Johns said. “They submitted the Maine Department of Environmental Protection approval and the substation site plan and their financial statement. Those are the big things.”
The first upcoming meeting, which is Wednesday, Sept. 21, is strictly to determine who is an “interested party” and will be allowed to speak first at the second meeting, a public hearing on the project scheduled for 6 p.m. Sept. 29 at Holbrook Middle School.
“The only purpose of [the Wednesday] meeting is to determine how many interested parties there are and come up with a schedule” for the public hearing, Johns said. “We wanted to make sure the interested parties have an opportunity to speak.”
Those who would like to be designated as an interested party should write a letter to planners about why and submitted it before the Wednesday’s meeting, which starts at 7 p.m., he said.
The Sept. 29 meeting is the second public hearing that has been held about the project. At the first public hearing, Peter Beckford, the resident closest to the proposed project, and his Bangor attorney, Charles Gilbert, spoke at length.
Julie and Peter Beckford recently filed an appeal of the wind farm’s provisional approval, listing 10 issues, and were told they must wait to file an appeal until after the project is approved.
Johns said he expect the second public hearing to be similar to the first, which was held in April.
“There will be an allotted time for developer and interested parties and a cross examination” period, before other residents will be allowed to speak, he said, adding that “we’ll allow the public to speak throughout the process.”
The planning board then will meet on Oct. 5 to “review all the documents and the second Wednesday, Oct. 12, is the final decision,” Johns said.
Both October meetings are schedule for 7 p.m.
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