Although Tuscola County Board of Commissioners voted Wednesday not to fund legal action to fight wind farm development, legal action is still going to continue. Even though the Tuscola County Airport Zoning Board of Appeals (AZBA) does not have a budget, they voted Friday to appeal the issue to a higher court. The cost to continue the legal fight is estimated to cost at least $15,000 too $20,000. The Concerned Friends of the Tuscola Area Airport agreed to cover legal costs to appeal the issue to the U.S. District Court. This next legal step is and effort to appeal Tuscola County Circuit Court Judge Amy Grace Gierhart’s November 27 ruling that the AZBA erred in denying the variances for 33 turbines, and she ordered that decision be reversed. Her decision was regarding the AZBA’s July 25 denial of variances on 33 of the 60-plus wind turbines associated with the Pegasus Wind Project. The AZBA contends those 33 turbines are a hazard accessing the Tuscola Area Airport. NextEra started development of the Pegasus wind farm in 2017. Since then, the township, the zoning board of appeals and NextEra have been at odds and in and out of court over the last few years on various issues related to the wind farm. Initially, the Pegasus project started with 60 turbines in Juniata Township, but as issues developed the number went down to 19 in Juniata with turbines construction shifted to neighboring townships.
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