Indiana State Rep. Tom Saunders, R-Lewisville, has proposed a bill that he says would allow local residents to have a “stronger voice” in the development of wind farms in their community.
According to Saunders, H.B.1597 would allow Indiana citizens to vote on the construction of a wind facility before it could be built in a county, municipality or township.
The bill would also establish disclosure requirements for wind farm developers and elected local officials to help avoid “potential conflicts of interest,” the congressman says.
“The construction of new wind farms is a contentious issue in our area, and my legislation would ensure residents have a direct say on whether or not wind farms could be built in their local community,” he says. “My bill would also bring greater transparency to the matter by creating requirements for local elected officials to disclose any financial ties to wind farm developers.”
Additionally, the legislation would establish minimum setback requirements for wind turbines: They would have to be at least 1.5 miles away from airports, hospitals, daycares, schools or universities. The machines would also have to be at least 2,200 feet away from the nearest corner of any residence.
The bill has been assigned to the House Committee on Utilities, Energy and Telecommunications.
The full text of the legislation can be found here.