DECATUR – The first step toward wind farms in Macon County could breeze in if approved by the county board.
A special use permit for construction of an electrical substation for electrical lines for a 200 NMW wind farm is set to be voted on tonight during the Macon County Board’s monthly meeting at the Macon County Office Building.
A proposal was passed at special meeting of the county’s Environmental, Education, Health and Welfare Committee on Monday, which was called so E.ON, the American unit of Germany’s largest utility company planning to build the substation, could have the permit approved before the end of the year. While some board members expressed displeasure with having to have a special meeting since E.ON filed paperwork at the last moment, it was approved unanimously to be sent for a full board vote.
Brad King, a representative of E.ON, said the timing of the permit for just a substation before the end of the year is to be eligible for the production tax credit.
While development and planning the placement of the wind farm and the wind turbines, which would need to have their own permits, will continue into the next year, King said construction can start on the substation before the end of the year.
The Special Use Permit will expire on Jan. 9, 2024, but will be voided if construction does not begin within 18 months of the board’s approval.
Macon County has not hired any outside engineering firms to study wind turbines within the county, with all information coming from within or from other counties.
The tentative plan is for the construction of 118 wind turbines on the west side of U.S. 51 near Maroa. Turbine locations would have to be agreed upon by the company and the landowners.
Initial projects from E.ON project the turbines to generate roughly $30 million in tax revenue over the 25 years. King said a lot of the revenues go to schools and across the other taxing bodies.
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding