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Properly sited wind is such a benefit to the Berkshires! Glad to see the naysayers are being shown how successful this can be. Certainly putting them on remote mountaintops is a win-win for everyone.
The Town of Savoy was promised $220,000/year by Minuteman Wind shortly before the town approved their wind bylaw that was drafted by Minuteman.
SB 2200, which recently passed in the State Senate, proposes to exempt such facilities from local real estate tax if they provide a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) to the town equivalent to 5% of estimated annual receipts from electricity sales. This would work out to something like $24,000/year for the Town of Savoy.
Would the town have voted in favor of its wind bylaw had it known that payments might only end up being be a tenth of what was proposed?
I am pleased to see that the operators of these projects are providing data on actual power generation. When I asked the Lenox Wind Energy Research Panel in January of this year if it had incorporated area wind production statistics into its review for Lenox Mountain, I was told that no contact was made with local operators and that such information was proprietary and unavailable.
Lloyd, assuming your numbers are correct, should the town of Savoy really expect close to 50% of the annual revenue from Minuteman Wind? Even if they committed to that number, how likely would it be that they make good on those payments?
Would the town have voted to approve the project? Maybe, maybe not. If it played out as you claim here, the real fault is with the town not demanding adequate data to force a realistic payment agreement from Minuteman.
When Minute Man proposed the origional $220,000 payment to us town council was present and they were willing to stick by this number even 2 years after making the first proposal.
There is no doubt that the residents of Savoy support this project and I just wish that outsiders like you Mr. Crawford would respect that and focus more on your community rather than ours. I'm sure there are a number of issues in Hawley that your time would be better spent on.
If only there was a way to know how people would have voted if they had the entire picture. Many were told that the money was needed by the town and the MMW would be the only project. Remember, the town voted on a bylaw PREPARED BY MMW. The Selectboard presented the MMW bylaw ahead of the Planning Board version.
I read in the N.R.A. magazine that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimates that windmills kill 440,00 birds annually in the country including 67 golden eagles in the San Francisco area.I don't know how true this is but if so than it is something to be concerned about.