New York siting board to meet April 9 on petitions for rehearing of approved wind project

The board said on April 2 that in keeping with measures designed to limit the spread of COVID-19, the meeting will be conducted by teleconference and members of the public will be allowed to observe and listen to the meeting via webcast only

The New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment on April 2 said that it will meet on April 9 to consider petitions for rehearing of its December 2019 approval of Bluestone Wind, LLC’s application for a certificate of environmental compatibility and public need to build and operate a 124-MW wind facility in the towns of Windsor and Sanford in Broome County, N.Y.

The facility includes 27 wind turbines — 23 in Sanford and four in Windsor — as well as underground collection lines, access roads, two permanent meteorological towers, and an operation and maintenance building in Sanford. The board also said that as part of the project, a substation would be located in Sanford at the end of the project’s 34.5-kV collection system, and would include a 10-MW battery storage system. A second substation would be located at the point of interconnection, adjacent to an existing electric transmission line owned by New York State Electric and Gas Corporation, the board said, adding that the two substations would be connected by a 200-foot-long span of overhead, 115-kV transmission line.

The board noted that, in its certificate and order approving the facility, it determined that the facility met the statutory requirements for certification under Article 10 of the Public Service Law. The parties seeking rehearing are Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society, Inc., (DOAS), Broome County Concerned Residents, and a resident of the Village of Johnson City, the board said.

In its Jan. 15 petition for rehearing, DOAS, for instance, noted that rehearing of a board decision is available where the board commits an error of law or fact, or new circumstances warrant a different determination. DOAS said, “Here, because the order granting a certificate to Bluestone Wind contained multiple errors of law and fact, a rehearing should be granted.”

Among other things, DOAS said that “the board’s acceptance of an unproven and highly speculative proposal for mitigation of eagle takings from the project resulted in significant errors of law and fact.”

In its Jan. 30 response to the petitions for rehearing, Bluestone Wind said, for instance, that DOAS’ petition should be denied because “DOAS does not identify how the board has committed an error of law or fact through its failure to agree with DOAS’s arguments. For that reason alone, DOAS’s petition should be rejected as inadequate and denied.”

The board said on April 2 that in keeping with measures designed to limit the spread of COVID-19, the meeting will be conducted by teleconference and members of the public will be allowed to observe and listen to the meeting via webcast only. The board said that persons with disabilities who require a sign language interpreter or other special accommodations should call the state Department of Public Service’s Human Resources Management office at 518-474-2520; TDD users may call this number through the New York Relay Service at 1-800-662-1220 or have a representative call directly to the office.