The Crawford County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday discussed enacting a temporary moratorium on the construction of new wind turbine towers in the county.
The proposed resolution states that “the county has an interest in protecting the county’s infrastructure, natural resources and property rights through adequate setback provisions.”
If enacted, the resolution would impose “a moratorium, effective immediately on the construction of wind towers for the purpose of drafting and adopting any necessary and proper revisions to ordinances, including zoning regulations, of Crawford County.”
The moratorium would sunset and be null and void on July 1.
Supervisor Ty Rosburg said the moratorium would give the supervisors time to gather information about individuals’ issues with wind turbines.
The supervisors may want to amend the county’s zoning ordinance to change the setback distance for wind turbine towers, according to Supervisor Kyle Schultz.
Chairperson Jeri Vogt said the board had been contacted a year ago by individuals with concerns about new wind turbines planned for the Vail/Westside area.
Other individuals have recently contacted the supervisors with similar concerns, she said.
“We think we need to get this moratorium until we can figure out exactly what we need to do for the best of everyone,” Vogt said.
Rosburg said the moratorium would give a chance for people on both sides to have their voices heard.
He said he wanted the moratorium in place before the county receives paperwork for new towers.
“We want to make sure we’ve got all the information that’s necessary to make the best decision for the county,” Rosburg said.
Schultz said that more people on both sides will come forward as wind energy continues to grow.
He said he wanted solid numbers in place about the issues.
Vogt said the supervisors are working to be more proactive than reactive.
Supervisor Jean Heiden said she had spoken to a woman who has nine wind turbines surrounding her home in the Westside area.
When the sun shines through the moving blades it causes a strobe effect in the woman’s house.
The light effects and the sound made by the blades affect her ability to sit on her patio, Heiden said.
“She’s used to it but she wishes she’d had a say before all these wind turbines started to encroach,” she said.
The supervisors should consider the concerns “before it becomes an issue all over our countryside,” Heiden said.
She pointed out that people live in the country for peace, quiet and tranquility.
The supervisors are working to protect the citizens of the county, she said.
The supervisors will discuss and intend to take action on the proposed moratorium during the April 27 board meeting.
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