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Jay County residents divided on proposed wind farm

Last month, FOX 55 reported about Scout Energy's plan to build the Bitter Ridge Wind Farm.

Posted: Jun 6, 2018 8:38 PM
Updated: Dec 23, 2019 12:00 PM

JAY COUNTY, Ind. (WFFT) - A proposed second wind farm in Jay County is dividing the rural community.

Last month, FOX 55 reported about Scout Energy's plan to build the Bitter Ridge Wind Farm.

Plans include a little more than 50 turbines in Jefferson and Richland townships in the southern part of the county.

The Bluff Point Wind Farm was built last year just east of there by a different company.

Now some people are planning to move if they projects moves forward.

"I'm leaving, I don't want to live in an industrial zone," said Jenifer Keller, who lives in lives in Richland Township. "I'm not opposed to wind farms. I just don't think that when someone puts something on their property that it should affect somebody else."

The 43-year resident of the county said she's worried what effect the second wind farm would have on her and her family.

"When I look out my back door, I'm not going to see fields, I'm going to see a monstrosity of a machine," she said.

If current plans move forward, Keller will see three turbines surrounding her home.

Just like Libby Davidson does about 10 miles down the road in the Bluff Point Wind Farm.

"We don't hear anything in the house. We don't even notice it outside. If we're outside doing yard work, we don't even notice it," said Davidson who supports the wind farms.

One concern many people have is their property values will go down. However, here on the eastern side of Jay County where wind turbines are already up, that's not the case.

"We just had a farm sale within the footprint of the wind turbines that brought $9500 an acre. That's as high as any farmland in Jay County has sold for a long time," said Bob Lyons.

Lyons has four turbines on his property.

He only has good things to say about the wind farm; from more money go towards school to better roads.

"My road now has six inches of asphalt it didn't have. It's smooth and wonderful," Lyons said.

There will be a public hearing on the proposed wind farm during the plan commission meeting on June 21.

The meeting has been moved to Jay County High School to accommodate an expected crowd.

It starts at 6 p.m.

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