Turbines offer chance to lower rising taxes

Posted 6 February 2018 at 8:56 am


I’m writing this response to Cathi Orr’s letter to the Orleans Hub and the Union Sun in regard to my comments during the public hearing on Jan. 29 at the Town of Somerset.

First of all, I realize how much it cost to remodel an old farm house, we did the same to our house when we moved to Somerset. We also built a 54’x56′ barn. That being said, even with the capital improvements, Ms. Orr did not lose money on the sale of their property in Orangeville.

My second point in question, farmland in 2012 was at an all-time high. Farmland was selling between $5,000-$6,000 per acre. As a result of Ms. Orr actively opposing windmills in the towns of Orangeville and Sheldon, farmers were not willing to buy their property at market value. Ms. Orr’s 100-acre farm was undersold, when the asking price was lowered to an extremely low price, due to her activism and emotions.

Yes, I am a signed leaseholder with Lighthouse Wind (Apex Energy). With a property tax increase of over 300 percent since we moved to Somerset, including a 11.85 percent increase alone in town and county taxes. I fear that we will see a substantial increase in school taxes due to declining revenue from the power plant.

Where will the money come from? Lighthouse Wind will bolster our community, help with tax relief and offer landowners individual payments. It would offer needed revenue for our town and school system.

Somerset has had multiple opportunities to bring business to our town to generate a tax base and revenue to our community. That’s a subject for future discussion!

Floyd Koerner