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Letter: Local control crucial over wind turbines

December 20, 2017

The Berkshire Eagle,

Janet Sinclair,

December 19, 2017-

On Thursday, the town of Savoy will vote on its wind zoning bylaws. The change, if it passes, will not affect the permits already issued to the developer of a wind turbine project. Regardless of the merits of projects like this one, because the law allows towns to make rules for siting turbines, voters in the town get to decide.
The state has been funding wind startups and zoning bylaws in several surrounding towns were written to expressly allow the specific plans of a developer. That’s what appears to have happened in Savoy. As the towns voted in favor of them, it was fair and square at the time. Fortunately, those bylaws can be changed.

In Savoy the new proposed bylaw would undo the existing one, and for now prohibit wind development. If it passes, new bylaws that are carefully considered by townspeople can be written and brought forward for consideration. That’s what happened in Peru, Shelburne, Buckland and Heath.

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