The last couple rows of seating were filled at the commissioners’ meeting with locals who voiced their contempt for wind turbines.
Several Federal Aviation Administration filings and phasing maps have come to the attention of residents as a company is looking at potential development of a wind farm on the west side of the county. None of the filings have been approved, but county commissioners have received several questions and comments about the wind turbines.
Pulaski County Community Development Commission (CDC) Executive Director Nathan Origer proposed, during a regular commissioners’ meeting Monday morning, that an informational session be held for the public. Origer said the idea is to hold a session without a wind turbine company but with people who live next to wind turbines. He would like to bring elected officials and residents who are living with wind turbines to the session so they can give the pros and cons of it. He does not want to invite those counties or residents that are currently fighting about the issue. Origer would also like to discuss what zoning can be permitted regarding wind turbines.
He hopes the session will inform not only property owners but also town and county officials.
Commissioner Kenny Becker said he would like to see the information session happen as soon as possible.
This is not the first time the county has been approached about wind turbines. A company was once interested in coming to the county with a wind farm but because local residents said they were not in favor of them, they left.
Zoning for wind turbines is addressed in the unified development ordinance. The language pertaining to the wind turbines remained largely unchanged from the previous zoning ordinance that was written before Origer was hired and was adopted shortly after he started working.
If the wind turbines are to be built in Pulaski County, whether in the county zoning or Francesville zoning, there will be a public hearing to discuss a change to the zoning or a special exception. If a zoning change is sought then the county commissioners would have the final say on it.
If the wind turbines crossed through Pulaski and Jasper counties then the companies would have to follow different sets of guidelines. Of the potential 34 wind turbines, there are about 18 that would fall under the county zoning jurisdiction and 16 are in Francesville’s jurisdiction.
Becker suggested that those who were in the crowd also talk with the Francesville Town Council.
Building inspector Doug Hoover said several phone calls have been made to the department but nothing has been filed with his office regarding wind turbines.
See the full story in the Pulaski County Journal, available in print and e-edition.
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