Carthage wind farm garners commissioner support

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FARMINGTON – County commissioners unanimously voted to send a letter of support for a Carthage wind farm to the Department of Environmental Protection, which is considering the project.

The 33-megawatt project would situate 12 turbines, each 450 feet tall, along the ridge of Saddleback Mountain, in southern Franklin County. The developer, Patriot Renewables LLC of Quincy, Mass., is a subsidiary of Jay Cashman Inc., a civil and marine construction firm, and currently operating a 3-turbine project in Freedom.

Project Manager Andy Novey presented an overview of the development to the commissioners, which is currently amidst the DEP’s permitting process. The town of Carthage has voted down both a comprehensive plan and a wind power moratorium.

Novey said that his company hopes to begin construction this year. He valued the project at $66 million, $58 million of that within the town of Carthage. In addition to the impact on the tax base, the company would pay the town $4,000 per turbine per year, as well as a one-time payment of $60,000 to the Bureau of Parks and Lands for conservation purposes.

Carthage Selectman Stephen Brown said that the selectmen were generally supportive of the project.

“I think a lot of people in this town are in favor of it,” Brown said, noting that others were not. In the past, residents had expressed concerns about the visual impact of the turbines on the ridge, which is widely visible throughout Carthage.

Commissioners voted to draft and mail a letter expressing their support of the project. As Carthage is an organized municipality, county government has no role in the permitting or approval process.

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  1. Visible in Carthage? Yes and highly visible from Wilton (including Wilson Lake and many neighborhoods and roads), Weld (including Webb Lake & Mt. Blue St. Park), Dixfield…
    Steve Brown and friends haven’t just sold out Carthage and that ridgetop, they’ve sold out the year-round and seasonal visitors (you know, tourism?) of that entire region. Residents within a mile will hear and feel those turbines (over 400 feet tall) and residents from miles away will see them day and night thanks to the red flashing aviation lights.
    You will not be able to drive the River Valley area without seeing a mountain full of these projects if all of those that have been proposed are approved.
    Wake up, Maine. The unpredictable energy is too expensive and the destruction of our mountaintops are irreversible.

  2. Great job town of Carthage! You get a few thousand dollars a year and the investors get millions! This creates NO new jobs, puts NO money into the local economy, reduces no one’s electric bill and what for? Bottom line…the rich just get richer.

  3. Then, I’m confused. If Carthage is an organized Town, why is the County even getting involved? They don’t send letters of support for Hempfest or whatever it’s called, over in Starks do they?

  4. Mr. Brown is just another example of a local politician being “bought and paid for” by one of the large wind power developers currently raping our state. My dealings with the wind power issue at both the local and state level have proven to me, once and for all, that too many politician’s here in Maine are starting to emulate those in Massachusetts and Chicago and other places around the country where lining your own pockets has become expected behavior on the part of politicians.

    The inland wind power industry in this state is nothing but an elaborate scam to make a handful of developers fat, dumb, and happy on the backs of the taxpayers. Without all the Federal money given to them, that’s right “given” not earned, they’d close their doors tomorrow in search of the next great scam.

  5. However you feel regarding eyesores and noise, or jobs and tax revenue proceed with caution.

    You only need to read the ENTIRE following article (read to end for actual tax benefits realized) for voters in Carthage to BEWARE excepting the “golden ticket” without proper expectations and preparation. Note same parent company, same small town situation, just a bigger project.


  6. Bill, it’s a dog and pony show. The Franklin County Commissioners did not show the backbone found with the Somerset County Commissioners who showed First Wind the door regarding their TIF request for a massive project in Mayfield Township.

    It’s all about the money with no thoughts about cumulative impact, wildlife, humans, tourism, or really anything else. Yes, there is a DEP permit process that the wind companies must go through but the hands of those experts who comment on the application from various state departments are tied by the expedited wind law. The floodgates were opened with that law and very little of Maine’s special places (special to many of us anyway) are protected.

  7. Why is it that we hear so much opposition to all these but still they pass and are built? How can we stop these? Enough complaining about it. Make a plan on what can be done to stop these from being built.

  8. It’s not hard to figure out who’s buttering these commissioners’ bread. I suppose it’s easy to get on board with these projects if each of your values has a dollar sign affixed to its left end. It’s hard to fathom how little regard these commissioners or the Carthage selectman must have for the people who will see their lives and properties degraded by this pointless waste of Maine’s greatest assets. Apparently these Maine officials have given up on the whole quality of place idea. Going instead for the easy money and short term thinking now.

  9. Corey, there are a lot of people working really hard on it, but we are up against laws that are on the books and would have to be changed. If a private property owner wants to sell or lease their land to a wind company, there is really nothing stopping them if the town does not have an ordinance in place. Wind companies target small, poor towns or unorganized townships which are a) most likely to take the money at any cost to their landscape and/or b) without an ordinance/comprehensive plan.

  10. The dangling of money sold these commissioners. They know , with the increased valuation these wind mills burden Carthage with, a share comes their way. Uneducated people in high places. The one thing these wind mill scams is starting to reveal is how all government is tied together to rape the working souls. Lisa, Becky, Bill, Jodi, Gary, Corey, Alan…….Thank You…………Your efforts and words are appreciated by more people than you know.

  11. Steve Brown has firm knowledge that there are citizens of Carthage who will suffer much loss with this project, yet choses to ignore them. Stop running to your new found government friends, Steve, and listen to the people. They put you in your elite position, they can take you out.

  12. 60,000 dollars for conservation? Of what? Why conserve anything if it will be surrounded by blinking Chinese megaliths? I watch them rise here in Lincoln and it is sickening. Worse than I had imagined. These INDUSTRIAL size turbines are wrong for Maine for many reasons. They make milions for flatlanders who contribute peanuts. They do not reduce C02 or fossil fuel use. They are a blight on the landscape. If sombody thinks windsprawl is green they are mistaken. In Australia 11 homes were ordered purchased from the owners by the wind company. The homes were unlivable due to noise. The owners had to sign a gag order not to talk about it. Does Maine need businesses like that trampling the state? No.

  13. Corey: We have been trying to stop these things, but they are constantly pushed by so-called Green groups, like the Natural Resource Council of Maine, as necessary to get us off of foreign oil, although that argument has been debunked, and they never even put it forth anymore. NRCM claims they are the foremost environmental group in the state, but they have been co-opted, just like so many groups over the years that started out with good intentions, but got too big, with a too big budget and staff and had no choice (they thought) but to sell out for the money. Sad….

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