CATO TOWNSHIP – The Cato Township Planning Commission approved conflict of interest bylaws and began its second year of working on a wind ordinance.
Four members were present at the three-hour meeting on Feb. 9 – Chairman Phil Morrow and members David Behrenwald, Brandi Clark-Hubbard and Quanah Striker – while a vacancy remains open after the Jan. 11 resignation of Kim Carr (which came after Clark-Hubbard called the police on Kim and her husband Pat Carr after the Jan. 3 Cato Township Board meeting).
Anyone wishing to submit their interest in the Planning Commission vacancy can contact Cato Township officials before March 3.
As he did at this month’s Cato Township Board meeting, Morrow spoke again at the Planning Commission meeting about his concern for the safety of township officials, referring once again to the incidents during and after the Jan. 3 township board meeting.
“Obviously there was quite a situation that arose,” he said. “Sometimes some of the topics we talk about people get pretty involved with and that’s alright but we still have to remain professional as individuals.
“I’ve had one resident twice outside this building get in my face and I shouldn’t have to deal with that,” he added. “Maybe we need to have some people that don’t need to come to our meeting. Has that ever been done?” he asked township attorney Leslie Abdoo.
“You can remove someone from a meeting for …” Abdoo began.
“We have business we need to take care of and we don’t need individuals to interrupt our meetings to the point where they won’t be quiet after you ask them to, we just don’t need that,” Morrow said. “It’s behavior that’s unethical. Some of these people are just not good. On the flip side of that, there’s some very nice people too, don’t get me wrong.”
During their meeting, the Planning Commission voted 4-0 to accept conflict of interest bylaws language as recommended by their attorney. The language had been tabled since last December.
Planners spent much of the meeting slowly going section by section through their draft wind ordinance along with their attorney. The proposed height limit for wind turbines is currently 500 feet, and while both Clark-Hubbard and Striker said they would prefer 400 feet, Morrow wanted to leave it at 500 feet. The topic was tabled for now.
During public comment, Jamie Snyder of Cato Township played loud wind turbine sounds on a large speaker while she spoke. Snyder said Missouri resident Carrie March gave her the turbine sound video, adding that March has 16 turbines within less than two miles of her home, the closest one being 2,100 feet from her home.
March is a member of the Montcalm County Citizens United Facebook page and she has also posted on the Concerned Citizens of Boone, Howard, and Cooper Counties, MO Facebook page.
The Cato Township Board is next scheduled to meet on March 7.
The Cato Township Planning Commission is next scheduled to meet on April 13.
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