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Wind farm gets green light  

Credit:  David Giuliani | The Times | Apr 13, 2017 | www.mywebtimes.com ~~

The La Salle County Board on Thursday approved a planned farm in the southeastern part of the county.

The 53-turbine project is set for the Allen and Otter Creek townships. It will mean a new infusion of property tax revenue for the Streator High and Allen-Otter Creek elementary school districts, as well as other taxing bodies in the area. The owner said it would mean $17 million more in tax revenue over two decades.

County board member Michael Kasap, D-La Salle, asked county officials about the tax impact for local entities.

“I would like to weigh the benefits,” he said.

Mike Harsted, the county land-use and environmental services director, said the zoning board, which recommended approval, doesn’t consider financial gain for taxing bodies when making decisions. But he acknowledged it would mean more revenue.

During a hearing last month, representatives of the project’s owner, Portland-based Avangrid Renewables, said the wind farm would fit into the agricultural nature of the county’s southeastern corner.

The company also contended the wind farm would have no effect on neighboring property values. Such an issue is hotly contested in debates over wind farms in other counties.

The company promised it would provide good-neighbor payments to those within a half mile of turbines. Twenty-six residents had signed up as of last month.

Source:  David Giuliani | The Times | Apr 13, 2017 | www.mywebtimes.com

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