PITTSFORD — A third municipal board in Rutland County wants a temporary halt to commercial wind projects until more studies can be completed on the potential impacts of large-scale turbines.
Town officials in Pittsford recently unanimously signed a resolution requesting the executive board of the Rutland Regional Planning Commission pass a resolution calling for a three-year moratorium on wind development in the county.
Pittsford joins the towns of Clarendon and Danby, which sought a moratorium resolution by the regional commission last month.
“It was an audience request at a prior meeting,” said John Haverstock, Pittsford’s town manager. “The board decided to put it on the (Oct. 3) agenda and took action.”
Haverstock was referring to a meeting in September where a resident read the statement approved by the Clarendon Select Board asking the regional commission to take a position that would allow the municipality time to review plans and assess the benefits and impacts of wind energy.
With the recent action, the town of Pittsford echoes the belief that the proposed wind project on the Grandpa’s Knob ridgeline is not just an issue for the four host towns, but also a regional issue.
“People have deemed it beyond the four towns,” Haverstock said.
The regional planning commission in the Northeast Kingdom has already approved a similar resolution calling for a moratorium. Several candidates for state office — including Republican gubernatorial candidate Randy Brock and Lt. Gov. Phil Scott — have voiced their support of a statewide moratorium on industrial wind.
The other three host towns for the Grandpa’s Knob project — Castleton, Hubbardton and West Rutland — have not taken action seeking a moratorium by the regional commission. They are working on amending portions of their town plans to include language discouraging industrial construction on the ridgelines.
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