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July 24, 2013

July 24, 2013: Letters to the editor

Howard, Tipton folks are on equal footing

On July 22, a letter writer stated the Tipton County Citizens for Responsible Development does not understand how local government works. She speaks of the wind farm opposition showing up at the 11th hour to voice their concerns about wind farms at the County Planning Commissioners meeting at the Fairgrounds.

I believe the Tipton County CRD knows full well how the local government is supposed to work and is trying to adhere to the guidelines in the Indiana state governing rules. However, when leaseholders and wind farm developers have been signing leases and making plans behind closed doors since 2008 or earlier — meetings the majority of Tipton citizens have not been privy to (in fact, one landowner in Windfall was escorted out of a planning meeting for current and potential leaseholders before the Wildcat I Wind Farm broke ground) — then it is only at the 11th hour that the wind farm plans become public knowledge.

By this time applications have already been made, county commissioners have received payments, and leaseholders have received and continue to receive annual payments in anticipation of their bounty when the turbines are up and running.

As for surveys being a valid representative sampling and the procedures followed, this is the legal means of local governments revising their comprehensive plans to gather information. Did the leaseholders not get the memo?

As for the statement, “more than 40 of the 125 people who opposed wind farms in Tipton County were not even Tipton County landowners” in February, many landowners of Howard County received letters (18 households in Chippendale received these certified letters) from the juwi lawyers stating that their property would be affected by the Prairie Breeze Wind Farm, thus giving them a right to attend every meeting and speak up for their rights. When one county infringes on the property rights of the citizens in their neighboring county, then they are on equal footing with that county’s citizenry.

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