wind farms

courtesy City of Frankfort

There’s been a lot of talk recently about wide, open spaces in Clinton County – and we address some of those issues this week with Frankfort Mayor Chris McBarnes on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor.

Prairie Creek Park won’t be open in time for the city’s inaugural Hispanic Heritage Festival, but it will be a site that alcohol sales and consumption will be allowed in the future.

Speaking of the festival, we’ll ask Mayor McBarnes how he defines success – and what the city is doing to quell fears in the Hispanic community nationally that they’re being targeted.

Taylor Haggerty / WBAA News

The front lines of Indiana’s wind farm debate have returned to Clinton County, where residents gathered Thursday night to hear from researchers and industry experts hoping to build a wind farm there.

E. ON Energy hosted a public information session hoping to dispel rumors about turbines’ impact on health, environment and the local economy.

E. ON Midwest Director of Development Lael Eason says the goal was to start a dialogue with residents.

The state's new energy policy task force had its first meeting on Monday. The group is charged with helping Indiana develop a statewide energy plan. Some of the topics discussed were how the transition away from coal would affect Hoosiers and how local ordinances are affecting the siting wind farms in Indiana.

Montgomery County Courthouse
Courtesy: Google Maps

Montgomery County now has a board to enforce its new zoning rules. Commissioners approved three appointees to the new Board of Zoning Appeals Monday morning.

Wind turbines sit on farmland surrounding a home
Taylor Haggerty / WBAA News

West Lafayette will not adopt a ban on large wind turbines going into effect in Tippecanoe County. The city council voted against the ordinance this week.

The ordinance prevents turbines over 140 feet in the county, and county commissioners say it’s to keep the land free for economic development. They have repeatedly said the ban isn’t a statement against renewable energy or environmentally-friendly technology.

But City Council President Peter Bunder disagrees.

“It’s also about environmental energy. And it’s - it’d be difficult to separate those,” Bunder says.

Courtesy: Google Maps

A final vote on Montgomery County’s first zoning ordinance will have to wait until after elected leaders sort out the proper process to move it forward.

County commissioners removed the proposal from the agenda of their Monday meeting, citing procedural issues. Now, the proposed ordinance has to go before the plan commission a second time before the commissioners can vote on it.

Taylor Haggerty / WBAA News

Commercial wind energy technology is no longer allowed within Tippecanoe County. County Commissioners unanimously approved a ban on large-scale wind farms at their meeting Monday.

Wind farms have sparked contentious debate in several West Central Indiana counties. Tippecanoe County commissioners argue that because of the county’s high population density and potential for economic growth, the developments aren’t a good fit.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

Though the discussion about wind farms in Montgomery County doesn’t affect Crawfordsville directly, it’s connected to the ongoing talks about a comprehensive plan and zoning rules county leaders are considering. And those have been nothing if not contentious.

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, we have Crawfordsville Mayor Todd Barton weigh in on a loud, and sometimes unruly, last month of talks, and see if he can separate fact from fiction.

Taylor Haggerty / WBAA News

Residents in Montgomery County are concerned they’re being left in the dark when it comes to the future of their community. That was the main message during a meeting of the county’s Area Plan Commission Wednesday evening, which included a public hearing on a proposed zoning ordinance.

County commissioners say the zoning ordinance is needed because they’re being threatened with a lawsuit by a wind energy company. Commissioners argue they can’t address some residents’ concerns about wind turbines without a comprehensive plan and zoning in place.

Taylor Haggerty / WBAA News

An ordinance that would ban large-scale wind farms from Tippecanoe County is moving on to county commissioners for approval and implementation. The Area Plan Commission voted to recommend its passage at a meeting Wednesday.

Meeting attendants argued both for and against wind turbines. That’s a change from previous discussions of the proposed ban, which were mostly opposed to wind farm development.

Those in favor of wind farms say the ban is a step back for Tippecanoe County and limits potential developments in sustainable, green energy.

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