It could be sometime next year before Kings County council’s review of large-scale wind turbine policy is completed.
At their monthly meeting May 1, councillors seemed pleased with the April 24 recommendation from the planning advisory committee to rescind the current large-scale wind turbine bylaw, but not so much with its impact on the current policy review.
Coun. Dick Killam asked staff for clarification of timelines and how the municipality would carry on with the review.
“We need this resolved sooner than later,” Killam said. “We have 1,500 to 2,000 citizens living and breathing this issue. They’re stressed.”
Killam said he would be relieved if the motion to rescind the current bylaw goes through, but it would be nice to have the policy review done by the end of the current council term or by the end of the year. He said the purpose of rescinding the bylaw is to prevent developers making applications to site wind turbines before the municipality can finish the policy review. Killam said council is hearing from the public loud and clear that is the preferred option.
Planner Madelyn LeMay said planning manager Ben Sivak has indicated he could not see the county carrying out the rescinding process and review simultaneously.
“My understanding is that consideration of new policy for turbines wouldn’t start until the rescinding consideration is complete,” she said.
However, there wouldn’t be time, considering the process that must be followed to rescind the bylaw, to also complete the review by the end of the council term in the fall. It would probably take until sometime in 2013 to finish both. The original review process would have been completed by the end of summer.
Coun. Patricia Bishop wondered why there is a need to rush. She said she is in favour of the rescinding motion because it would give council time to create policy acceptable to the public and take time to appropriately engage citizens.
Coun. Jim Taylor said he thinks the important thing at this point is to get the rescinding motion in place. He feels residents on the North and South mountains are happy with the resolution and review as long as it is done properly.
Coun. Mike Ennis said the most important thing for him and his constituents on Peck Meadow Road in Greenfield is that no turbines go in before the municipal review is completed.
Council has yet to consider the planning advisory recommendation to rescind the current bylaw. The planning advisory public participation meeting on the recommendation to rescind the bylaw is scheduled for May 10.
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