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Village Vision News

Village takes steps to limit wind farms

Thursday, February 15, 2018

During the first Board meeting of the year, on January 2, there was a follow-up to an earlier discussion that occurred on November 6. The topic was Ordinance No. 2018-6 regarding text amendments to the Village development ordinance regarding large wind energy systems, otherwise known as wind farms.

“Staff had recently become aware of some potential interest in development of a wind farm northeast of the Village of Forsyth,” Village Administrator David Strohl told trustees at that November 6 meeting.

Strohl recommended taking a formal, short-term step toward prohibiting any new wind farm development so close to the Village proper.

The new ordinance (No. 2018-6), written by Village Attorney Jeff Jurgens, builds on Ordinance 2017-24, approved by the Board on November 6. That ordinance was an amendment to Title XIII of the Village Code on the Prohibition of Wind Farms, according to a memo to the mayor and the Board from Community and Economic Development Coordinator Andrew Zupkoff.

A new amendment would implement into the Development Ordinance a definition of large wind energy systems and prohibit them within the Village’s corporate limits and within 1.5 miles of those corporate limits.

The new ordinance also meets the purposes described in Section 9.11 of the Development Code, and: A) promotes the public health, safety, morals, comfort, and general welfare of the Village; and B) conserves the value of property throughout the Village.

The Illinois Municipal Code allows for amending the Village’s development ordinance. It also allows municipalities “to regulate wind farms and electric-generating wind devices with its zoning jurisdiction and within the 1.5 mile radius surrounding its zoning jurisdiction.”

Village staff and its Board initiated appropriate text amendments to the Village’s development ordinance, which were then recommended unanimously — in a vote of 7-0 — by the Planning and Zoning Commission.

Trustee Jim Peck made the motion, which was seconded by Trustee Kerstin Trachtenberg. All votes were Yea; Ordinance No. 2018-6 carried.

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