Wind Farm Updates Provided During Commissioners Meeting, Fund Transfer Resolutions Approved

WAYNE – At one point, all three wind farms in Wayne county were discussed with the one looking to work out a road maintenance agreement during the regularly scheduled Wayne County Board of Commissioners meeting.

From the Wayne County Courthouse courtroom, Tuesday morning’s meeting carried through the lunch hour which included a pair of executive sessions.

Mark Casey, highway superintendent first brought up issues with the Sholes Wind Farm about several driveway problems. More information was submitted when the second round was sent in as Casey stated there’s a way to solve each one.

David Levy visited with the commissioners representing the Plum Creek Wind Farm as he brought forward their Decommissioning Agreement. The only significant difference from the Sholes and Plum Creek Wind Farm agreements is that Plum Creek will be posting bonds with each of the landowners. Commissioners approved the agreement in reference of adding a road haul agreement clause. Levy will work with county attorney Amy Miller to finalize information by the end of June. The agreement doesn’t require it to post a bond until year 15 of decommission.

Nick Coil is the Director of Development for both Wind and Solar with Tradewind Energy and attended the meeting looking to answer questions about why the Haystack road maintenance agreement hasn’t been signed. He stated both parties must communicate a little better to take a step in the right direction and the road maintenance agreement is a step that needs to be done.

Casey gave Tradewind credit on providing some information but the county would still need more to figure out routes for which county roads would be used for taking the turbines and other pieces.

After coming out of the first executive session where the board wanted the county attorney to negotiate a purchase of property, the group re-visited the subject with Coil for nearly two more hours along with one last executive session pertaining to personnel. If they couldn’t come to an agreement, Coil mentioned Wayne county would miss out on the economic impact and money provided to the school district.

Commissioners moved forward with Tradewind and will allow them to use the roads as the county attorney and Coil will have to work on the document to define the future terms for the road use agreement.

Doug Elting with Berggren Architects provided another update on the courthouse restoration project as they start winding down their work and are expected to wrap up in July. He also brought up to the board about starting a conversation of setting aside a certain dollar amount for maintenance of the courthouse.

The board approved fund transfer resolutions of $20,000 from the Miscellaneous General Function to Child Support Agreement Function of General Fund along with $23,000 from the Miscellaneous General Function to County Jail Function of General Fund. Commissioners also approved to transfer unused funds from County Road Districts #1, #2 and #3 to Snow Removal and Equipment Fund.

The next regularly scheduled Wayne County Board of Commissioners meeting is set for Tuesday, July 7 at 9 a.m.