MADISON COUNTY, Iowa — The battle for wind turbines continues in Madison County.
The Arbor Hill project would allow 52 new turbines to be put up, but the Madison County Board of Supervisors added a new ordinance that has delayed the project.
“Now, they say it’s one and a half-mile from any house or anything like this. It’s impossible when you come to Madison County," explained Judy Neal, a Madison County resident.
Neal wants a wind turbine on her property.
Others in her community disagree, saying the wind turbines are loud and causing their sleepless nights.
Neal said to have a wind turbine on your property means $6,000 more in income a year. She said she believes the board of supervisors is taking them away because of this.
“It’s guaranteed income. Now, farmers aren’t guaranteed an income. We have our farm ground to earn income off of," said Neal. "They are denying that opportunity.”
MidAmerican is now suing the Madison County Board of Supervisors. Geoff Greenwood, communications manager at MidAmerican, sent Local 5 this statement:
"Madison County’s new ordinance is inconsistent with, and impermissibly interferes with, our vested rights through the Arbor Hill wind farm permit that the county previously approved. Both a district court and the Iowa Court of Appeals have upheld this lawful permit.
"Our lawsuit alleges that several provisions in the new county ordinance, including turbine caps and setback requirements, are arbitrary and make it both practically and functionally impossible for us to complete Arbor Hill, or continue to operate the Macksburg and Arbor Hill wind farms in Madison County.
"Clean energy is good for our environment, it's good for our economy, and we're adding more while also keeping our rates affordable."