A new vote is coming up in Otis on Oct. 6 to determine whether the voters will grant the town permission to spend a quarter of a million dollars on land for the proposed wind turbine.
There has been much confusion about the turbine in Otis, fueled by outside interference by an anti-wind group, minimal information of changes from the town as the project progresses, and a population that does not want to vote openly about this highly charged proposal.
To set the record straight: The wind turbine Otis is planning to erect is considered an industrial turbine, standing over 40 stories high. The original site, in a rural industrial area, had to be abandoned because of the cost of hooking into the power source was not feasible.
Instead, the site was changed to a rural residential area about five miles away, where there are a minimum of 27 homes or properties situated in pristine forest. At least five of these homes are less than half a mile from where the turbine is proposed to be built. To add insult to injury, almost all of the homes near the turbine belong to second home owners, who cannot vote.
There is little regulation in Massachusetts regarding wind turbines, allowing the town of Otis to avoid a full environmental impact study. We, the voters, are left not knowing how clear-cutting two acres of forest is going to affect the wildlife, the birds and bats, the trees, or the water surrounding the two acres that abut where this turbine will be. I find it hard to believe that a 40-story industrial turbine will not impact pretty much everything within several of miles of it.
To add to the confusion, we are being told that the land we many of us thought was being donated for this new turbine site, is in fact being sold to the town, to the tune of a quarter million dollars.
The vote on Oct. 6 is an opportunity for Otis voters to either approve or deny the town’s request to purchase this property. Please, Otis voters, come to Town Hall on Oct. 6 to vote for or against this turbine. This is your town, this is your decision. Don’t let a “quorum” of 15 people determine the fate of our town.
Barbara Drosnin East Otis
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