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Residents, Aldridge Reach Agreement on Wind Turbine

Residents accepted the turbine operating between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

The lawsuit filed by a group of residents who live near the wind turbine at Aldridge Electric has been settled.

David Gates, a member of Citizens for the Protection of Libertyville, said the group of residents "accepted Aldridge running his turbine from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. (The) exceptions are major holidays."

"This was the only compromise we could manage without continuing to pay our attorney for another year of stalling, and a trial would have taken money that we simply do not have," said Gates.

The with the intent of stopping Aldridge Electric from operating its wind turbine on its property. The group tentatively had resolved the lawsuit in January.

"We have long been a supporter of the renewable energy industry, and are excited to reach an agreement with the village of Libertyville and the local residents to operate this turbine," said Ken Aldridge, owner of Aldridge Electric. "We should all compliment the leadership of the mayor and village board for the foresight in approving this 50KW wind turbine, and support them in approving future projects."

The next step will be the Village Board's consideration of the wind turbine ordinance.

"Our small victory was that concurrent with our lawsuit was the excellent work of the plan commission on a very good wind turbine ordinance," said Gates.

Trustees were slated to discuss the ordinance at a committee-of-the-whole meeting Tuesday, but the meeting was deferred because two trustees were unable to attend, said Mayor Terry Weppler.

"The plan commission spent many hours discussing the ordinance and I am happy with the work they did," said Weppler. "However, the noise levels in the ordinance at property lines are unrealistic in my opinion. If you look at the decibel levels, they are lower than other noise restrictions in the community and are potentially unattainable."

The plan commission started public hearings in January regarding the Electric Power Facilities ordinance, which included a maximum sound level for wind energy facilities of 35 decibels between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m., and 40 decibels between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.

"There has also been discussion that the potential ramifications of the ordinance would be to totally prevent wind turbines in the village," said Weppler. "If that's the case, we should say we don't want them — not pass an ordinance that effectively does the same."

Weppler said he has "asked the board to spend some time on this issue to make sure everyone understands the ordinance before it is passed."

"The board should review the ordinance and not rubber-stamp any issue brought before them," he said. "We will discuss this issue as a board to make sure that what we approve is an ordinance that's good for the community and not just based on a prior bad experience."

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Jose May 16, 2012 at 02:09 PM
property values is more important than electric ???? beyond me...
gloria May 16, 2012 at 02:44 PM
This is our future....alternative energy sources. Why not capture nature's gifts - wind and sun??? Seems like a great compromise to me. What is more important for the future of our children, property values or finding energy sources???
Bill Overton May 16, 2012 at 04:12 PM
Aldridge should never have put this thing up so close to residential property. Obviously the noise and "flicker" is disturbing to residents and, yes, will affect their property values. It's not about alternative energy, which, of course, is good; it's about being a good neighbor and respecting the rights of folks who live near it. It's shameful that Aldridge was able to get away with it and then even more shameful for them to fight to keep it even though it hurts their neighbors. They obviously have clout in Libertyville. Why else would they get all the village's electrical business? Are bids even put out or do they have a blank check? What a shame.
Jan May 16, 2012 at 11:48 PM
Wind farms are wonderful if they are located out in rural regions. As a Libertyville native and a former resident of Northern California for nine years, I always saw wind farms off busy highways in rural areas. It is not normal to have a large industrial fan placed in anyone's backyard. This is an example of goverment rubber stamping a project with no clue as to what they were allowing. If the is company was so concerned about electrical savings they could have decorated the roof with solar panels. Instead they are polluting the community with an ugly fan and causing vibrations and noise. Why don't they put a fan in their own backyard where they live! Janet Williamson Moreland LHS Class of 77
Bill Overton May 19, 2012 at 03:26 PM
Move near a wind turbine and see how your children feel about it.

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