BAD AXE – The total number of wind turbines in Huron County has climbed to 472 – with the county still possessing more than any county in Michigan.
The Apple Blossom wind park is expected to be in full operation mode in a few weeks, said Christian Anguis, project manager for Apple Blossom at Wednesday’s Huron County Planning Commission meeting.
All 29 turbines have been constructed, and about half have been commissioned in the 100-megawatt wind park spanning Winsor and McKinley townships.
Andrew Johnson will take the lead on the project next month, Anguis said.
A the height of its construction, between 250 and 270 workers were employed – 90 percent of which were from Michigan, he added.
In other business, Huron County Emergency Services Director Randy Miller updated the planners on the $36,000 Hazard Mitigation Plan update.
The county could save thousands through a grant from FEMA, Miller said. He will know whether the funds are coming by Jan. 1.
Some aspects of the Huron County Master Plan and Hazard Mitigation Plan can be done together, Miller said.
“There’s no reason we can’t get them both done in kind of a reasonable manner,” he added.
He noted that the process is “moving at the speed of government,” and will take some time.
Planning officials said by the end of the year, the Huron County Board of Commissioners would have to pass a resolution funding the Master Plan update into 2018, since the original budget is close to being expended.
The planners also reviewed a resolution recently passed by the board of commissioners giving the board the power of final approval over the Master Plan.
“We have the final say so in adopting it or not,” said Sami Khoury, chairman of the county board and liaison to the planning commission.
“It’s to make sure that the master plan is inclusive for everyone in the county,” said Commissioner Steve Vaughan, who was at the planners’ meeting.
Khoury added the final master plan should be available for public review prior to adoption.
If the county commissioners do not approve it, the board must send it back to the planning commission for review and further development.
In other planning commission business this week, the board reviewed PA 116 enrollment applications for Steve and Mitzi Koroleski of Lincoln Township and Donald and Kathy Fiebig of Sebewaing Township. The board of commissioners will determine the next stage of approval of the acreage to be included in the state’s farmland preservation program.