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Officials hear complaints about sound, flickering

ARKWRIGHT — A large number of Arkwright residents attended this week’s town board meeting, as the entire room seemed to be waiting anxiously to hear the results of the wind turbine sound test.

Residents have been demanding further testing, some vehemently opposed to the very existence of the turbines. One resident noted, “the interference of rustling leaves or insects” in the fall season may have distorted the results, as he found them unsatisfactory.

In response to the demand for more tests, the Arkwright Town Board is looking into acquiring the special equipment necessary to do so. Councilman Larry Ball assured the residents, “This is the reason that we’re buying a piece of equipment, so we don’t have to have the people from Connecticut come all the way out here, pay them, and we could be able to do this with our own equipment.”

In addition to the complaints about the turbines creating noise, many residents are also upset over the visible implications created by them. “I just want to know how or why the project could be approved in such a way that residents can be affected by shadow flicker,” Arkwright resident Rob Leary contested. “I’ll be affected at least six weeks on the calendar year.”

Shadow flicker is the flickering effect periodically caused by rotating wind turbine blades on residential properties. “The state of New York has three agencies that are looking at it,” Town Supervisor Fred Norton responded, “and they all found that any wind project has shadow flicker.” Ultimately the matter, Norton went on to say, “is a question that should be directed to the developer.”

In other business, the town board appointed a new member to its Planning Board to fill a vacancy.

“We had a resignation from the planning board, Claude McAvoy,” said Norton. “I asked Katie Ball if she would be interested in it and she said yes.”

Ms. Ball’s qualifications and connection to the youth in Arkwright made her stand out as a candidate. “She represents the younger people in our community and I suggest we appoint her to fill out Claude’s term,” Norton went on to say, “which has got two more years to run.”

Councilman Larry Ball abstained from the voting process, since Katie is his daughter. “Let the record show that I refused to vote,” to avoid a conflict of interest, he said.

The town board meeting ended with a citizen suggestion from Amanda Dando: “It’s been very difficult to find out when these meetings are. My recommendation would be to make a town website.” She noted many other towns have websites, making information on meetings and the town itself more accessible.

The next meeting of the Arkwright Town Board will be a special meeting, held Wednesday Dec. 26 at 7:30 p.m. at the Town Hall, 9543 Center Road.

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