Montgomery County Commissioners held off changing the wind farm ordinance on Monday, as the county’s other policy-making body appears to be joining the debate.
Commissioner John Frey wants the county council to determine whether property tax abatements or federal tax credits are necessary to keep wind farms in business. Frey asked the council to discuss the issue with the two companies developing farms in northern Montgomery County so that the commissioners have a better sense of the long-term financial prospects of wind energy.
“I want to know the truth,” Frey said in an interview after the meeting.
Sugar Creek LLC and Roaming Bison Wind are developing two separate farms in the county’s northern townships. Commissioners are considering changing the setback and noise level requirements in response to opposition over the projects.
Commissioner Phil Bane said he wasn’t prepared to recommend action on any changes. A vote may come next month.
Supporters and critics of wind farms continued speaking out during Monday’s meeting.
In other business, commissioners:
• Approved a $144,081 bid from Wiers for a dump truck. The truck brings the county highway fleet back to full level after the 2016 fire.
• Lifted the annual Frost Freeze Law that prohibits vehicles weighing more than 8 tons from using county roads.
• Ended the county-wide travel advisory that was enacted during earlier winter weather.
• Took four bids for road paving materials under advisement. Proposals were received from Asphalt Materials Inc., Triangle Asphalt Paving Corp., Marathon Petroleum Co. and Keystone Contractors. The winning bid will be awarded at May’s meeting pending review from county highway director Jeremy Phillips.
• Tabled once again a resolution to expand the county’s regional sewer district territory to include State Road 32 and Interstate 74 while boundary lines are still being drawn.
• Approved renewal of workman’s compensation for 2018-19. Premiums increased by $1,220, said NFP insurance representative Tim McCormick.
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