March 29, 2012

Commissioners choose wind energy development partner

By Carl E. Feather, Staff Writer, Star Beacon, 29 March 2012

JEFFERSON – Commissioners on Tuesday selected a wind energy development partner to further develop their vision of harnessing the wind at the Ashtabula County Nursing Home and Board of Developmental Disabilities’ buildings.

The board put out requests for proposals (RFP) last fall and assembled a volunteer committee to review those proposals. The proposals were opened and presented to the evaluation committee Nov. 29, 2011.

Commissioners, acting upon the evaluation committee’s recommendation, rejected the proposal by Genesis Energy Systems as not meeting the RFP’s requirements. The proposal submitted by Carbon Vision was found to meet the RFP’s requirements and the board unanimously accepted that proposal for the purpose of entering into negotiations for a contract.

Commissioner Joseph Moroski pointed out that the resolution is not an agreement on building wind turbines at the site, but rather a starting point for negotiations on the matter.

“It does not mean we’ll do it,” he said.

Commissioner Dan Claypool, who spearheaded the effort to have an initial wind study done at the South Ridge Road, Kingsville Township, sites, said counties, states and the federal government need to look carefully at wind-energy opportunities because wind is the “next generation” energy source.

The board envisions a developer putting up one or more turbines to generate power, then selling that power to the county at a reduced rate. Originally the plan was to erect one large turbine, but the thinking has shifted to one large one for the nursing home and a smaller one for the Board of DD facilities. Separate contracts, parallel in nature but tailored to the need of each entity, would be negotiated with the help of Ashtabula County Prosecutor Thomas Sartini.

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