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Savoy wind project needs more transparency

The Energy from Wind project, a proposed-five turbine wind plant on West Hill in Savoy, is a most important local issue.

Regarding the Payment In Lieu Of Taxes (PILOT) agreement between Savoy and the developer Minuteman Wind, this is critical to the town’s future economy and residents’ good health. Fifteen Savoy taxpayers from the total populace of about 600 attended the meeting on the subject.

The vote gave the Select Board sole decision-making power on the wind PILOT/agreement. The whole town ought to know what is in the agreement as decided.

What does the town get from PILOT – $100,000 per year ? What would it cover – profit and loss?

The public ought to be informed as to: Projected costs for power to Savoy consumers. Minuteman Wind profits and costs. Investors’ input and profits. Income to Savoy – roads, school, fire department, town hall and elderly program. Costs to the town as custodians of the wind plant – i.e., security, road and area maintenance, fire coverage, wind plant repairs, etc. Cost of construction workers for six months. Staging area rental cost at Black Brook Road.

It is assumed since so little of the town voted and the majority probably don’t know (or won’t be informed) about income vs. cost, the Select Board ought to publicize the whole PILOT agreement in detail. If it doesn’t, the public should request a spread-sheet and a copy of the five-year plan, if there is one, from the board and review it for accuracy.

If the Select Board continues to resist, then The Eagle should inform the public.

Preston McClanahan

Savoy