Saturday, July 28, 2007

All projects should well-placed & thoroughly collaborated with everyone affected

This letter was submitted by Ellis County resident, Penny Davis:

The Hays Daily News reporting of CPV’s compensation offer to those living in the project area begs further reporting of the facts and requires much clarification.

My husband and I are property owners in the proposed project area. We have not received one visit, telephone call or letter, offering us any sort of compensation. I can’t say they haven’t approached anyone, but ask many of the landowners opposed to the project location, and they will likely tell you of an experience similar to ours.

We have attempted to host conversations with the CPV and leasing landowners in the area. We began by sending a letter to all of the individuals living in the project area and those who had signed leases with CPV shortly after we found out about the project.

Interestingly, we were made aware of the project when a friend emailed us the map submitted by CPV, with our house in the middle of around 10 turbines. Yes, that’s right, no disclosure when we bought our home several months before the application, and no effort by CPV or leasing landowners to work with us or even inform us of the application.

In response to our letter to request dialogue with our neighbors regarding our questions and concerns, we received many civil phone calls from neighbors opposed to the location of the project.

We only received one phone call from a leasing landowner. During this call, we were threatened, peppered with insults, and told in no uncertain terms to mind our own business. The project manager did call us after being told we were sending letters to the community. She met with my husband one time. During that conversation she informed him that there was no money in the project budget for any sort of compensation to offset our losses.

In our attempts to visit face to face with other landowners supportive of the project they insisted that this discussion take place after the issue has been resolved by the county. Further, a few of our neighbors also opposed to this location, have described to us their experience of being harassed by CPV or their representatives on Memorial Day weekend.

This distasteful behavior prompted many of us in the area to seek legal protection and request that future communication originated by CPV include our legal counsel.

It continues to be very disturbing to me that CPV makes statements to the press that are so different from our experience with this project. Even more disturbing is that the HDN will take the word of the project manager and print it as if it were absolute fact.

CPV has not made the good faith effort to genuinely work through the multitude of issues inherent in placing this project so close to so many homes before (or for that matter even after) the project was proposed.

Proximity to transmission lines is no excuse for the bad location. Transmission lines transmit, which means they run great distances across unpopulated land.

Other wind projects recognize this fact, and place their turbines in isolated rural areas, not close to cities.

It is vital that the Commissioners take the step to deny this application.

This will allow appropriate and much-needed revisions to be made to the zoning regulations before consideration of another application. Perhaps it will also send the message to CPV-Iberdrola and future applicants, that the citizens of Ellis County will not be manipulated or divided.

We will only support a project well founded, well placed and thoroughly collaborated with everyone affected.

Submitted by:
Penny Davis
1083 210th Ave.
Hays, KS 67601

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