ROXBURY – Despite having yet gained town acceptance of its proposed wind power project in Roxbury, a Brunswick-based wind developer will convene an informational meeting next week with state environmental officials present.

Robert Gardiner of Record Hill Wind LLC and Independence Wind LLC said the meeting will be held from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 20, at the Roxbury town office off Route 17.

The meeting is required by the state because Record Hill Wind intends on or about Tuesday, Nov. 25, to file an application for permits from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection due to the size of its project.

The application is to allow for construction and operation of 22 Clipper Liberty C96 2.5-megawatt turbines in Roxbury, according to a state-required ad in Wednesday’s Rumford Falls Times newspaper.

The proposed 55-megawatt wind farm will also include electrical collection infrastructure, an electrical substation, and an operations and maintenance building.

In a letter dated Tuesday to Roxbury residents, Gardiner explained that Record Hill Wind isn’t trying to bypass an upcoming Roxbury town vote regarding allowing wind power projects on town hills.

“We are preparing to submit a full application to Maine’s Department of Environmental Protection later this month, along with our request that they not take final action until the town has spoken in town meeting,” Gardiner said.

For the past year and a half, Gardiner and former Maine governor Angus King, Independence Wind principals, have held a series of informational meetings with Roxbury residents and town officials regarding their project.

Currently, the Roxbury Planning Commission, which consists of town planners, is drafting revisions to Roxbury’s comprehensive plan and land use ordinances that would allow the wind project to be built.

Once completed, planners and selectmen will convene a public hearing on their draft language. If there are no serious alterations to be made, a special town meeting will be held likely in early January to allow Roxbury residents to decide if they want to allow the project to be built.

“Without a positive vote on these changes, our project cannot go forward,” Gardiner said.

During the first part of the Nov. 20 meeting, King and Gardiner will describe the project’s specific plans, scientific studies of its impacts and economic impacts to Roxbury and the region.

The second section will give people an opportunity to express their views to both men and DEP officials.

“Please come and say what you think,” Gardiner said.

There may be some time limitations for individual speakers to give all a chance to be heard.

Requests for a public hearing or that the Board of Environmental Protection assume jurisdiction must be received by the MDEP in writing no later than 20 days after the application is found by the department to be complete.

However, a public hearing may or may not be held at the discretion of the DEP commissioner or state board. Public comment on the application will be accepted throughout processing of the application.

The application and supporting documentation will be available for review during normal working hours at both Roxbury’s town office and the department’s office at 28 Tyson Drive in Augusta.

Written public comments on the application may be sent to Maine Department of Environmental Protection, 17 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0017.


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