• Vt. town to reconsider wind issue at town meeting
    March 04,2014

    The Associated Press

    MONTPELIER -- Voters at Lowell's Town Meeting Day are being asked to reconsider their support for Green Mountain Power's Kingdom Community Wind project, now making electricity on a community ridgeline. But no matter what they decide, the 21 turbines will continue making power for now.

    In 2010, before the project was built, 75 percent of Lowell residents voted in favor of the project, but a ruling by the Vermont Supreme Court is forcing the community to reconsider an anti-wind resolution it says was improperly passed over during the community's 2012 Town Meeting.

    Lowell Town Clerk Karen Clinger said she doesn't know what to expect when the issue is brought up Tuesday, but Select Board Chair Richard Pion has said that no matter what the vote is on the non-binding question, he expects nothing will change.

    Resident Ed Wesolow, who took the issue to the Vermont Supreme Court, said the ruling to put it back on the agenda was a win for democracy because there will be additional discussion.

    The Lowell wind issue is one of many being considered by voters across Vermont who are holding their annual Town Meeting Day.

    Town Meeting is used in many communities to elect municipal officers, approve budgets, examine zoning bylaws, authorize long-term capital borrowing and decide town operating calendars.

    Lowell isn't the only community that will discuss energy issues. On Monday in Cornwall, voters passed a non-binding resolution to oppose a plan that would pipe natural gas to Ticonderoga, N.Y., through their community. The referendum vote was 126 to 16.

    Shoreham voters will hold a similar vote on Tuesday.

    Montpelier voters will be choosing a mayor and Burlington voters will be considering gun control measures. Three articles on the agenda there would allow police officers to confiscate guns, ammunition or weapons from suspected domestic abusers, ban firearms from locations with liquor licenses and require firearms to be locked when not with their users.

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