March 12, 2020
New York, Opinions

Time is running down to comment on wind farm

RTW: Time is running down to comment on wind farm | By Kathy Kellogg, Special to the Olean Times Herald | March 11, 2020 |

Hey, lookout! The New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment released its recommended decision on Invenergy’s proposed 340-megawatt Alle-Catt Wind Farm.

This is news of some urgency. If you’re not aware of it, someday you might wish you’d looked it up by the March 20 deadline. A final decision will be made in May.

Invenergy’s been trying to get permission to put about 116 industrial-sized wind turbines, each one as tall as a 50-story building (and a 591-foot tip height with 380- to 492-foot-long blades) on private leased lands. They want to put them in Rushford and Centerville, through Freedom and Farmersville and westward all the way beyond Arcade.

These power plants will feed a brand-new extensive underground electric grid beneath our feet, 9 miles of overhead collection lines, a substation, a 345-kilovolt switchyard, 69 access roads and, last but not least, a concrete batch plant to build the foundations. All this to supply a lot of insatiable people downstate who must have never visited the country and who can’t find the “off” switch on their appliances.

It’s certain these power plant wind farms are all going to be built in our rural area – not where power-hungry downstaters live.

The siting board, as it is called, is asking the public to read the 267-page decision and then send feedback by March 20. My guess is it thinks we can’t read that fast, but I happen to know the people of Cattaraugus County and the surrounding communities have been to school and know the land – and they won’t want to be left out.

Here’s how you get all the information:

Visit the Department of Public Service website,, then click the “Search” link on the upper center area of the page, then use the “Search by Case Number” feature, to search for case 17-F-0282.

You will see all documents filed in the last 12-14 months, and one of the most recent filings is the “Recommended Decision.” You can fact-check it yourself.

Start soon. When you’re done go to the top right of the page, and click on instructions to post comments.

Comments may also be submitted electronically to the Hon. Michelle L. Phillips, secretary, at Or you can send them snail mail to Secretary Phillips, New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment, Three Empire State Plaza, Albany, New York, 12223-1350.

Or you can call in your opinion on a toll-free, 24-hour line at (800) 335-2120.

There’s more.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has just proposed a 40-page amendment to his 2020-21 budget that will be voted on in Albany before April 1. This will fast-track projects like Alle-Catt and let the siting board choose the locations of all renewable projects, which would be let out for bid to private developers, in collaboration with the Department of Economic Development and NYSERDA.

Local governments, zoning and planning boards and IDAs will be mostly spectators, like the people who might have to live with these power plants. Please urge your state legislator to vote no on this shocking proposal, and please ask your town representatives to do the same.

No time to waste.

(Kathy Kellogg lives in Farmersville.)

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