[ exact phrase in "" • results by date ]

[ Google-powered • results by relevance ]


Add NWW headlines to your site (click here)

Get weekly updates

when your community is targeted


RSS feeds and more

Keep Wind Watch online and independent!

Donate via Paypal

Donate via Stripe

Selected Documents

All Documents

Research Links


Press Releases


Campaign Material

Photos & Graphics


Allied Groups

Wind Watch is a registered educational charity, founded in 2005.

News Watch Home

County votes to slow the breezes for turbine energy; Commissioners want updated ordinance for wind parks 

Credit:  By Chris Aldridge, Tribune Staff Writer | Huron Daily Tribune | December 31, 2014 | www.michigansthumb.com ~~

BAD AXE – “I don’t know where this is all going to go,” County Commissioner John Nugent said Tuesday. “But we have to begin somewhere on trying to control the irresponsible spread of wind turbines.”

Well, the path is leading into the hands of a lawyer.

On Tuesday, county commissioners voted 6-1 to pay up to $1,000 to Foster Swift, a Grand Rapids law firm, to draft paperwork for a moratorium on wind energy in Huron County. Commissioner Steve Vaughan cast the dissenting vote.

Nugent is pursuing a six-month halt on development of wind projects countywide. He hopes it will give enough time for a committee of the county’s planning commission to fully revise and update an “outdated” and “deficient” wind energy ordinance that he says puts residents’ health, safety and welfare at risk if more turbines are erected.

“That’s why I’m proposing this, so that research can be done, the documents can be reviewed,” Nugent said.

Nugent previously said his intent is not to curb wind development completely, or cause harm to responsible developers.

Though the board voted to retain attorney Mike Homier of Foster Swift to prepare the documents, some residents and public officials aren’t in agreement.

Ron Jaroch, Dwight Township supervisor, said he was surprised to see an article in the Tribune’s Saturday edition that reported Nugent was seeking legal help to pursue a moratorium.

“I had no contact with Mr. Nugent that he was going to do this,” Jaroch said.

Commissioners represent townships divided among seven districts. All have turbines except Nugent’s District 7, which includes Dwight, Hume, Lake, Lincoln, Pte. Aux Barques and Port Austin townships – a point Jaroch made clear before asking the board to vote down the moratorium.

“Now you want a moratorium. I think it’s a little late for that, isn’t it?” Jaroch said.

“It’s never too late to do something right,” Nugent said.

At the board’s previous meeting, corporate counsel Steve Allen said restricting developers would require reasoning and evidence, and that because the county’s wind energy ordinance is in place, “we cannot arbitrarily tell (developers) no.”

On Tuesday, the board asked Allen again for his advice. He said the county should proceed cautiously, but that the board has a duty, “in light of the fact that 40 percent of the county is not happy with wind energy,” to look at what the law firm says. It would be beneficial to spend the money to see the analysis and attorney Homier’s rationale, he said.

“It appears that Mr. Homier is well qualified in these issues,” Allen said.

Commissioner John Bodis said he would not have voted in favor if Allen advised against spending up to $1,000 for documents from the law firm.

“As far as spending any more money above and beyond that, I would be totally against,” Bodis said. “I just don’t want to see this $1,000 turn into $20,000 or $30,000.”

For Commissioner Jeremy Tietz, it’s “$1,000 well spent.”

“I don’t want this one motion to turn into it’s either you’re for wind turbines or against wind turbines – that’s not what this motion is about at all,” Tietz said. “This is just documentation.”

Filion resident Dale Ricker said he respected the board for considering a moratorium.

“Give it careful thought; we all now know more than we did two years ago about wind turbines and we’re going to continue to learn as we go,” Ricker said. “It’s not that everyone is against wind energy, but there is a place for it, and for those who don’t want it in their backyard would like to see some control and some protection for their family, their health, their well-being, property values, the whole shot.”

Others interpreted Allen’s advice differently.

“That you’re skating on very thin ice, and it could be very costly to Huron County, townships and residents,” Bad Axe resident Paul Holz said.

Commissioner Vaughan said going forward with a moratorium would undermine Allen’s credibility and ability to draft documents for a moratorium, and would question the ability of the planning commission in reviewing the county’s wind ordinance.

“It’s not in our best interest to pursue (this),” Vaughan said.

Source:  By Chris Aldridge, Tribune Staff Writer | Huron Daily Tribune | December 31, 2014 | www.michigansthumb.com

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial educational effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding
   Donate via Paypal
(via Paypal)
Donate via Stripe
(via Stripe)


e-mail X FB LI TG TG Share

News Watch Home

Get the Facts
© National Wind Watch, Inc.
Use of copyrighted material adheres to Fair Use.
"Wind Watch" is a registered trademark.


Wind Watch on X Wind Watch on Facebook

Wind Watch on Linked In Wind Watch on Mastodon