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Inexcusable response

Matt Schmitt proves he is unable, or unwilling, to deal with important issues. A recent candidate profile yielded this inaccuracy:

Question: Do you support stricter guidelines for where wind turbines can be built?

Schmitt: “The costs and benefits of wind energy are fairly well-established, and I support preserving local control for turbine siting…”

There is no local control. You can’t preserve something you never had. Turbine siting standards with no scientific basis were set by Enron in the 1990s. The state of Minnesota continues to use and enforce these useless standards.

A candidate has to work hard to be uninformed on this topic. Goodhue County, several Townships and citizens in Senate District 21 have waged a multi-year battle with the State of Minnesota and Texas billionaire T. Boone Pickens. The proposed project is the most controversial in Minnesota and is notorious nationally. Local, State and national newspapers have provided extensive coverage. MN Public Utilities’ record is lengthy and publicly available. Two local websites are devoted to the topic. Schmitt attended a June wind update in Zumbrota which covered this issue.

Matt Schmitt’s response is inexcusable. Is he pandering to someone, or does he not grasp the content and ramifications of State energy laws? As a Belle Creek Township resident and Chairman of the Township Board dealing with the issue of wind energy firsthand, I have seen the time and effort Senator John Howe has devoted to understanding the problems of industrial wind. He introduced legislation on siting that would have protected local residents. I have to deal with this now. Howe is experienced and knowledgeable now. I can’t wait for Matt Schmitt to get up to speed. Senate District 21 deserves better.

Chad Ryan

Belle Creek Township Chairman