Greed has spawned wind power development in small communities because existing roads and transmission lines reduce the wind developer’s initial cost. Developers mislead townspeople and officials and attempt to get wind turbines installed with little consideration of what is good and fair for the town.
One key to their success is speed; get it done before the truth is found out. The truth is these projects are subsidized with millions of federal dollars, your dollars. The truth is they’re not as green as they claim. The truth is once wind turbines are installed wind companies have a history of not resolving conflicts, but employing experienced lawyers small towns or homeowners can’t afford to compete with, just like in Vinalhaven and Mars Hill. The truth is they don’t want you to know how many millions of dollars they make and still ask for reduced local taxes in the form of a TIF. Companies make profits; they should pay their own way.
In Frankfort, Eolian claims they aren’t asking for a TIF, although they paid a Portland lawyer to come to town with spreadsheets presenting TIF information to the town. A 60/40 split in local taxes favoring Eolian has been brought up at meetings. Again, why give Eolian a local taxpayer subsidy when they’re already receiving millions of dollars in federal subsidies?
A TIF can only be used for state-approved economic development in a designated area and cannot be used for your local school or to lower your property taxes. In most cases a TIF will only benefit the wind companies. Without a TIF we as a town may lose a little in state funding, but in the long run by giving Eolian this local tax subsidy we are in essence taking money away from our county tax base and the school district and giving it to Eolian.
Wind power developers want you to think any restrictions placed on them makes projects impossible. Not so, it just costs more to do it right. If the turbines available today aren’t appropriate for small-town projects it’s not the people’s fault. Stop installing junk and eventually better equipment will be built.
Six local residents appointed by a town vote have produced an ordinance that protects the public health and financial welfare of the entire town. The purpose of this odinance is to legally force the wind company to do it right or not do it at all. Without this ordinance they will not necessarily do what needs to be done to protect Frankfort, but will protect their pocketbook. The residents of Frankfort need to pass this ordinance.
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding