Letter: Litmus test for Van Wert


What kind of people live in Van Wert County?

To answer this we need look no further than the current wind farm controversy. New Ohio legislation wants to give the families most affected by the placement of wind farms a vote in the matter. This balances changing the setback laws allowing the wind corporations to site turbine setbacks across property lines onto unleased land without the owner’s permission.

The wind corporations have not leased enough land by about 20%. Obtaining leases costs money so they have lobbied the government to give them free use of neighboring land. Once the turbines are built that land cannot be used for development. No homes or inhabited buildings can be built. The land owner gets no payment and frankly has nothing to say about the matter. Banks will not give mortgages on such property. Structures cannot be properly insured. If the landowner is injured while in the setback he cannot sue the wind farm because he was in a restricted area even though he was on his own land and never agreed to the setback.

At stake is $2 million a year in payments to the government. We are being told how the newly enriched government will spread benefits around the county, but none if it will be used to compensate the violated residents in the wind farm footprint. The schools will get more money to serve the remaining students who were not forced out by the wind farm. There will be no new residential construction in the affected area for at least a generation.

So what kind of people live in Van Wert County?

Are we the kind who respect each other’s lives and property or are we the kind who are indifferent to the injury of a minority group in the name of bigger government?

W.C. Morris, Venedocia

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