Does Jackson County want a wind farm?
Neighboring Nemaha County has a wind farm in its southern region, just across its southern border with us - Jackson County.
Marshall County commissioners are grappling with how they will regulate and zone a wind farm proposed in that county.
Brown County commissioners have announced their interest in hiring legal counsel to represent that county in wind farm proposal talks, if they get approached.
Pottawatomie County commissioners have announced they won’t entertain any wind farm proposal talks until after the county’s planning and zoning commission finalizes a plan to regulate them.
Here in Jackson County, county officials already have been working with the wind farm company in Nemaha County, because Jackson County roads have been needed to haul wind farm equipment to and from the project site.
At the Kansas State Legislature, there’s talk of a “wind generation permit and property protection act’’ that, if approved, would define setbacks for wind turbines in the state, in addition to other restrictions on sound and light emitted.
A letter to the editor published elsewhere on this page provides an overview of a person’s perspective on the impact of wind farms.
From all of the information provided above, and much more, it is clear that Jackson County officials need to plan now also, in order to be ready later, for when and if wind farm company representatives come calling.
Section 30 of Jackson County’s zoning regulations state that wind farm businesses must seek approvals from the county’s planning commission and county commissioners. That’s a start.
The first question that must be answered is whether Jackson County wants wind farms.