Eleven Kingston families are requesting that the town’s zoning enforcement officer issue cease-and-desist orders to prevent the operation of four new wind turbines in town.
The requests would affect the wind turbine named Independence on the town’s capped landfill and the three wind turbines on business owner Mary O’Donnell’s Marion Drive property.
The neighbors are challenging the validity of the site plan approval and building permits for the four wind turbines. O’Donnell’s three wind turbines are all operational, while the turbine on the town landfill is expected to be operational by mid-May.
Attorney Christopher Senie, representing the families, said consideration should have been given during permitting to the distressing sound pressure created by the blades of the turbines. Senie said he also has concerns about ice throw and shadow flicker at the Independence turbine because of its proximity to Cranberry Road and Route 3.
In both letters to zoning enforcement officer Paul Armstrong, Senie argues that the wind turbines were installed prematurely before proper approval by the attorney general’s municipal law unit, that the applicants failed to file proper notice with the town clerk, and that a peer review should have been conducted as part of the site plan review process.
O’Donnell said she wishes that anyone with concerns about her turbines would contact her directly. O’Donnell said she understands some property owners may have an underlying fear that the value of their properties will suffer from wind turbines but she said that’s not the case. “Nationwide, studies have shown they really don’t,” she said.
If Armstrong denies the requests, Senie has 30 days to appeal that decision to the Zoning Board of Appeals, he said. According to Senie, if Armstrong grants the requests and issues cease and desist orders, the town would have 30 days to appeal that decision. The ZBA would be asked to rule if there has been a zoning violation.