"A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have"
Thomas Jefferson

Monday, March 31, 2008

Blowin' In The Wind

There is money blowing in the wind and all the local taxing entities are jousting for their morsel as if they were waiting for the cookies to come out of the oven.

Make no mistake about this, wind farms have nothing to do with our carbon foot print, or our desire to become an environmental greenie. The only green everyone is looking for here is the cabbage, the beans, the moolah, the wampum, the dough, or whatever else you want to call it. Show me the money!

The wind power companies have dangled the dough in front of the landowners for leasing their land and the local towns for approval of their projects while expecting the towns to deliver the schools and county. At the same time, the power producers are extracting all the tax subsidies they can from the public on the local, state and federal level.

The latest word from the most progressed project in Jefferson County, Horse Creek Wind Farm, is that the town of Clayton is proposing to keep 47.50% of a soon to be proposed PILOT, the schools receive 37.50% and the county would receive 15%. As opposed to a typical tax structure assumed by residents, which is approximately 7% for a town, 36% for the county and 57% for schools, give or take some percentages in various towns depending upon their tax rate, some towns do not have a town tax rate.

The effects of a wind farm and power lines to transport the power produced reach far beyond a specific town in which they are located and residents in a nearby town and the county as a whole should receive some benefit to mitigate these effects. A power producer is no different from any other company locating in the county, they need to pay their fair share, with any special consideration given based on the benefits they bring to the county residents and that fair share distributed according to the system in place.

Residents should ask their supervisors, town board members, school board members and county legislators if the additional revenue will be used to benefit them or will it just be used for increased spending.


Anonymous said...

Why not save the revenue and buy our own windmill(s) to help supplement local taxpayer energy costs?

Anonymous said...

Thought farmer / landowners / ag businesses / trust beneficiaries were stewards of the land. Looks doubtful since Illinois land leased for wind turbines is primarily farm land. Wind turbines are nothing but vertical factories providing very little to offset the average American's energy gluttony and consumption of coal and gas. Think in the aggregate, not as a single turbine footprint. For every wind 'farm,' over one hundred twenty acres of primarily agricultural land is taken out of production. In IL, the goal is 15,000 turbines. At an acre plus per turbine footprint, that's well over 15,000 acres gone. Combined with housing developments, expanding businesses and industries, rural property is disappearing. Land owners and county boards: MAKE GOOD DECISIONS FOR ILLINOIS' FUTURE.

Anonymous said...

Powerlines, substations, et al, are assessed, and TAXED in each of the towns that they are in.

Who deemed that 7% of a tax dollar collected should stay in the Town that it was collected in? Why should 93% of a tax go elsewhere?

If some town on the other end of the County wants the benefit of a tax collected (regardless of what you call it), let them host their own farm/ factory/ prison/ etc.

Oh, yeah. PRISONS don't pay any tax to the communities that host them. Guess we took it deep on that one.

Anonymous said...

"Residents should ask their supervisors, town board members, school board members and county legislators if the additional revenue will be used to benefit them or will it just be used for increased spending."

Oh, An April's fools day joke!!

Thanks for the laugh

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