Chatsworth Council to weigh wind farm bylaw

By Jon Radojkovic, Owen Sound Sun Times

Chatsworth council will consider a moratorium on industrial wind turbine construction at its next meeting.

“It will be something for us to think about,” said Mayor Bob Pringle.

The issue came up as council responded to neighbouring Arran-Elderslie’s request for Chatsworth representatives to sit on the Inter-Municipal Wind Turbine Working Group, a group of municipalities that has been trying to reassert municipal jurisdiction over the erection and location of industrial wind turbines.

The municipalities oppose the province’s Green Energy Act, which takes power to control where industrial wind turbines can be built out of municipal hands.

Members of Chatsworth council have been sitting on that committee for the past year.

Arran-Elderslie enacted a bylaw in April to control wind turbine construction based on health provisions of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Free- doms.

Chatsworth council appointed Deputy-mayor Terry McKay and Coun. Scott Mackey. There is also a member of the public to be appointed before the next Turbine Working Group meeting on Jan. 13.

Pringle acknowledged that some municipalities favour tur- bines and said “we should encourage the placement of tur- bines to those municipalities that want them.”

So far there have been no wind turbines built in Chatsworth, but a wind com- pany was scouting for farms to place the turbines in the north- west and the eastern part of the township.

It would take money to make a constitutional challenge to the Province’s Green Energy Act, and council cautioned that they would have to make hard deci- sions if it came to putting out funds for lawyers to represent them.

“We have to be fiscally responsible,” said Mackey.