Cohocton Wind Watch: Put proper planning ahead of personal profit
Cohocton Wind Watch is a community citizen organization dedicated to preserve the public safety, property values, economic viability, environmental integrity and quality of life in Cohocton, NY and in surrounding townships. Neighbors committed to public service in order to achieve a reasonable vision for a Finger Lakes region worthy of future generations.


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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Put proper planning ahead of personal profit

For more than 10 years wind developers have bullying people around, lying when it suits their needs, and seriously dividing the town of Prattsburgh into factions that are often angry and yelling at each other. The last board meeting ( like many others in the past ) was a great example of this. There were pro- and anti- industrial wind energy groups that squared off, yelling back and forth, creating chaos and turning the meeting into a circus. The town supervisor, Al Wordingham tried to control things, but some people continued on.

Eventually, the supervisor asked for a motion on a road agreement to be voted on. The motion passed 3 to 2 and gives the wind developer Ecogen the right to go ahead with their project. Ironically, those people who have wanted this wind project all along began moaning, complaining, and yelling at the board for its action. One would think they would be happy it passed. However, the developer is now being put to the task of proving they have vested rights. According to Judge Ark's ruling, they now have 168 days to do that. Their claim has been that the town board and the highway supervisor, Chris Jensen have held them up, when in fact they still don't have all the leases they need to proceed.

Now it's time the town has a chance to say prove that you're ready and go for it.
All of us fortunate enough to live in this beautiful region of New York need to remember a few things. We are blessed with more fresh water than anywhere in the country, we have beautiful hills, valleys, creeks, rivers, and the finger lakes near by.

We moved here 27 years ago for these reasons, and we know others who've done the same. Ever since the possibility of industrial wind turbines, however, people have shied away and are waiting to see what's going to happen.We have friends waiting this out and we know other people with friends who aren't making any moves just yet.

The saddest part of this is that if the wind project goes ahead as planned, the
payment to the town through the pilot is around $145,000 if the developer makes the payments. Meanwhile, if wind turbines are not planned out well, and they are irresponsibly placed in and around our hilltops, they'll keep people from building new homes here. New homes increase the tax base and revenues to the town. More important than that is the money new residents spend on goods and services in the area they live. Town officials would be acting foolishly if they didn't keep that in mind . I believe our town board is working hard to help our town prosper, and to keep all its residents protected in all ways. That is part of their job as public servants.

Isn't it just common sense to do the proper planning, and if turbines are to happen, place them where they won't stifle the growth of this beautiful area.

David Snaith
Prattsburgh, NY

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