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Shelburne wind turbine public hearing

SHELBURNE – The special town meeting regarding the Mohawk Regional School District’s Green Projects, Cowell Gym remediation and the consideration to purchase Kingdom Hall has been rescheduled to Thursday, Oct. 6 at 6:30 p.m. in the Buckland-Shelburne Elementary (BSE) School cafeteria.

That same day at 7:30 p.m. in the BSE library, the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) will host a public hearing about the proposed Mt. Massaemet wind farm project as part of the group’s 7 p.m. meeting.

“We have worked to get both events together in the same place,” said Selectmen Chairman John Payne at the selectmen’s Monday, Sept. 26 meeting, “so that people will be able to easily go from one to the other.”

Subsequently in that meeting, selectmen heard from Planning Board Chairman Vincent Matthew Marchese that the Planning Board was not given the town bylaw-mandated 30-day window to review the wind project and he said that all that Board received was the application with no supplemental material. Marchese did obtain an 11-page supplement from which he did not quote, but said he estimates could not encompass the entire $40 million, eight-turbine proposal.

Selectman Joe Judd said that the Planning Board and ZBA ned to address whose responsibility it is for these two boards, as well as the town’s health board and Conservation Commission, to each have copies of both application and full supplemental materials in the case of special permitting. Because of this issue, the public hearing may be postponed.

“I thought it was the applicant’s responsibility,” said Payne. “The wording of the bylaw does not give a specific time when the 30 days for board comment starts and ends. If the hearing is continued to a later date, a 30-day period in beetween could have the same spirit intended by the bylaw.”