May 23, 2018
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Public hearings set for Clifton referendum questions

By Dawn Gagnon, BDN Staff

CLIFTON, Maine — Two local referendum questions going before voters in conjunction with the local school funding vote in June will be the focus of two public hearings set for 7 p.m. Thursday at the Clifton town office.

The first question would add hunting cabins to the definition for residences in the town’s land use ordinance, Board of Selectmen Chairwoman Julie Clewley said Tuesday evening.

The second question is being put before voters at the request of a local partnership that is seeking to develop a $25 million wind farm and substation on Pisgah Mountain, located just below Rebel Hill Road.

Pisgah Mountain LLC is seeking Maine Public Utilities Commission certification as a Community-Based Renewable Energy Pilot Project, which provides incentives for the development of community-based renewable projects that are locally owned, according to the petition its partners filed with the state.

In order to qualify for the incentives, the developers must demonstrate they have the support of the local legislative body, which in Clifton is the town’s voters.

Clewley said that approval of the resolve being put before voters is not intended as approval of the project itself, but rather as a measure of support for the application for MPUC incentives.

The Pisgah project is the first wind farm proposed in Clifton since a moratorium was lifted last year and wind farm rules were included in an updated land use ordinance, according to articles previously published in the Bangor Daily News.

The project, however, has proven controversial in the community. Some neighbors say the project is not a good fit for the rural town, while officials hired to review it said it was one of the best projects they’ve seen.

According to reports previously published in the Bangor Daily News, Paul Fuller and other Plisgah Mountain LLC partners want to put up five Vestas V90-1.8 MW wind turbines that would generate electricity for 3,000 to 4,000 Maine homes.

Each of the five turbines will be approximately 308 feet tall at the hub and 455 feet at the top of the propeller blade and would sit at the top of Pisgah Mountain, just south of Rebel Hill Road.

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