Residents say officials are pushing through wind farm project illegally
TIPTON COUNTY – A fight against a wind farm that would supply electricity to 56,000 Indiana homes and businesses continues to heat up. Opponents said they have evidence that could get the Tipton County project stopped, and put some local leaders in hot water.
Resident Michelle McNabb has concerns about having a wind farm in her part of Tipton County.
“There would be ten to twelve turbines, 500-foot-tall turbines within a one-mile radius of my home,” said McNabb.
Some living in the county say decision-makers are pushing the project through, and lining their own pockets at the same time. Mark Lynn said he feels like information is being kept from residents.
“We feel like we are being railroaded through this,” Lynn said. “There is no opportunity for legitimate opposition to be able to derail this at this time. Effectively all of the decisions have been made.”
A group of people living in and near the town of Sharpsville said County Commissioner Mike Cline has already taken money from the wind company. They said that was why he was for it.
They said Mark Baird, who sits on the Tipton County Plan Commission, is in on it, too. According to opponents, their votes have been bought and paid, but Cline said the contract he signed was with the company AES. He said that project was canceled. The wind energy company juwi is currently trying to break ground in Tipton County now.
“I do not have a contract with juwi now, or will I ever have,” said Cline. “I will never draw a dime out of juwi or any income from juwi.”
Cline said the group saying that they do not want the wind farm does not have all of the facts.
“People can say anything they want to say and they can also assume everything about your business and other people’s when they do not,” said Cline.
The group against the wind farm gave all of their findings to the Indiana State Police for them to investigate. The group’s last chance–the last stand to block the proposed wind farm–is on February 25th.