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Dennis hatchery resumes quest for turbine  

Credit:  By Cynthia Mccormick, Cape Cod Times, www.capecodonline.com 28 April 2012 ~~

DENNIS – A shellfish hatchery has resumed its legal battle to install a wind turbine near Chapin Memorial Beach.

A hearing has been set for Sept. 6 to establish a trial date in Aquaculture Research Corp.’s lawsuit against a regional historic commission and a local woman who oppose the 242-foot turbine.

The pretrial hearing had been set for Friday but was rescheduled, according to a clerk in Orleans District Court.

In late February ARC President Richard Kraus told the Dennis Board of Selectmen his company was dropping the suit, saying it was too expensive and time-consuming.

But more recently officials at the hatchery, the largest on the East Coast, decided to continue to press for approval of the 600-kilowatt turbine.

Kraus recently told a Cape Cod Times columnist it would save the hatchery about $150,000 in utility costs.

The turbine proposal already has followed a long and twisting road.

ARC, which is located in a historical area off Route 6A, won approval for its wind turbine plans from the Old King’s Highway Historic District Committee in Dennis in August 2010.

But a month later, after Dennis resident Rosemarie Austin filed an appeal, the regional board of the historic preservation district overturned the local board’s decision.

In response, ARC sued Austin and the Old King’s Highway Regional Historic District Commission in the Orleans court.

Shellfish hatchery officials argue that the regional board has no grounds for saying the Dennis board had exercised “poor judgment” in allowing the turbine.

But Richard Watts, who belongs to Austin’s new organization Save Our Beaches, said the regional board made the right move.

“How could a 242-foot turbine possibly be accepted in the historic district?” he asked. “I see it basically as destruction of the Old King’s Highway Historic District.”

Source:  By Cynthia Mccormick, Cape Cod Times, www.capecodonline.com 28 April 2012

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