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The Future of Palo Alto County

June 22, 2018
Emmetsburg News

To the Editor:

Three years ago I moved back to the area to pursue Ag. Business. In that time I have learned the importance of being diversified to make a living; grain alone won't cut it. Annual revenue from wind turbines would help local farmers be able to withstand fluctuating commodity prices.

We have a small group of people suing the county, protesting against the construction of wind turbines. So far the county has spent over $42,000 defending their decision. That will be added to the property taxes of all landowners in the county. YOUR taxes.

If this suit stands, it will set precedence that landowners cannot do what they want with land they have paid for, and continue to pay taxes on. The group claims they are doing this for the good of local residents. Why are they not supporting the landowners that WANT the turbines? Do they not have the same rights? Will our choice of crops soon be dictated to us as well? All participants in the wind turbine project are voluntary, being compensated, and eminent domain has never been used to move this project forward.

As a younger adult in the area, I regret not speaking up at the meetings last year. When the current generation of farmers has retired, my generation will be here still reaping the benefits of this project. Economic opportunities of this magnitude rarely comes to rural areas like ours. We need them in order to keep our school and infrastructure up-to-date. As current market prices show, commodities simply aren't enough on their own anymore. The IA Coalition for Property Owners should withdraw their lawsuit. Doing so would ACTUALLY help local residents. Please support wind energy in our area.

(signed) Aaron Opheim

Emmetsburg, IA



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