Culver Wind Ordinance Tabled Amid Uncertain Language

The matter was heard on first reading when they last met, but the Culver Town Council ran into additional problems with their wind energy ordinance when it came back for a vote.

The Town has been working to craft an amendment to the zoning ordinance focusing on Wind Energy Conversion Systems for some time. The proposal has run into problems with residents on a consistent basis.

While reviewing the ordinance earlier this week, Council President Ginny Bess Munroe says her hesitation is still the height allowances.

“My other hesitation was: there’s nothing in here about what happens if one of them breaks, or doesn’t work, or deteriorates over time,” says Munroe. “And then third, there’s nothing in here about the distance – I know there’s something in here about distance from property to property line – but there’s nothing in here about distance from the lake.”

The Town’s Plan Commission has heard from residents concerned about property values and the height, noise, and color of the devices. Care has also been taken to distinguish between vertical and horizontal wind systems.

Without an easy to read designation specifying where the wind energy systems can be used, members of the Culver Town Council felt uncomfortable casting a vote. Council member Sally Ricciardi says certain portions remain unclear, and says other portions conflict with the current zoning ordinance.

“It says that the tower setback shall be 2,500 feet from any L1, R1, R2, C1, and P1. Yet, here it says in at least one of those that you can get a special use permit – which makes no sense to me,” says Ricciardi.

During Tuesday night’s meeting, the Culver Town Council decided to table the measure for additional consideration. It will come back for a vote at their next meeting.