EverPower foots bill for two county roads

Mary Perham

The estimated $537,000 it will cost to repair portions of two Steuben County roads will be paid by wind energy developer EverPower.

County legislators approved Monday setting up a special account for the funds needed to fix a total of 3.5 miles of county Routes 27 and 109 in the Town of Howard.

The roads were used to transport materials to sites used for the 27-turbine EverPower project, completed this fall. The company had a separate agreement with the town to repair town roads, which were the primary route for construction.

County Public Works Commissioner Vince Spagnoletti said the agreement also includes future repairs to portions of county routes 27 and 70A expected after EverPower installs two more turbines this year.

Spagnoletti said EverPower already repaved portions of County Route 109 this year, and all the roads are in “fairly good” shape. The county expects to restore the roads in 2013.

Work on the Howard project began late last spring, and was reported near completion in October.

Although the wind farm was opposed by residents concerned it would damage the environment, town officials said the project would supply renewable energy and increase revenues.

A 20-year tax payment plan through the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency will bring the town $7.1 million during that period. The town will receive 51.5 percent of the total payment, with the county taking in 16.5 percent, or $2.3 million.

The Canisteo-Greenwood Central and Hornell City School District will split the remaining 32 percent, with the amounts determined by the location of the turbines.

The company is also looking to install two additional turbines on 39 acres of private land south of Spencer Hill and South Woods roads, bring the total number to 27.