Vt. wind project fined for violations
MILTON — The developer of a four-turbine wind power project in the towns of Milton and Georgia agreed to pay a $10,000 fine and contribute another $10,000 to a remediation fund for violations of its state permits during blasting for the project that is nearing completion.
The Vermont Public Service Board issued the order to Georgia Mountain Community Wind last week. It’s the result of a negotiated settlement with surrounding neighbors.
“We want to be good neighbors. We wanted an amicable resolution as quickly as possible,” said Georgia Mountain wind project manager Martha Staskus.
The company acknowledged that rock from blasting a road up the mountain likely flew onto a neighboring property with enough force to leave marks on trees, the Burlington Free Press reported.
The company also admitted violating a permit by twice failing to provide enough notice to neighbors of blasting and by blasting on a state holiday.
Dan Richardson, the attorney for the group of five neighbors, said the settlement was the only way the neighbors could address their concerns about the impact of the project on their properties.
“I think they chose the settlement that would put them in a better place than prolonged hearings,” Richardson said. “It is fair to say Georgia Mountain negotiated in good faith — but I wouldn’t say they are all good friends.”