Wind Farm Debate Swirls In Boone County

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Similar to when public comments were first made in June, an ambitious and controversial wind farm project is again going overtime at the zoning board of appeals.

Four Boone County families want to set up 15 wind turbines to generate renewable energy located around around Illinois Route 173 and Route 76.

At Tuesday’s hearing, nearby residents raised concerns they claim Illinois other counties with wind farms face, like noise pollution and road damage.

But supporters of the plan argue wind farms will protect farmers from development bulldozers, while providing new tax dollars for schools. Though it's unknown whether the zoning board vote tonight on the wind farm, the opinions on both sides are known.

"I have a beautiful view out my window, and that could be a view of a wind farm, so every morning when I get out of bed I’ll see windmills rather than the beautiful landscape, so emotionally for me, it wouldn't feel very good," John Ellingson said.

"I think people ought to remember how America got started, they're trying to say we're bringing something new. It's been here many, many years ago," Eleanor Guthrie said.

Should the Boone County Zoning Board approve the wind farm, it would then go to the planning, zoning and building committee. The project would still need final approval from the full county board, a vote which could happen as early as August 10.